Wednesday, 23 March 2011

The next big thing?

Just finished watching the movie 'facebook'. They try to portray Mark Zuckerburg as an 'idea stealer'. Maybe he is one, maybe he is not, but the bottom line is, he is the youngest billionaire in the world.

I've always wanted to be an inventor and have been fascinated by inventions. I think life is boring without all these new inventions. A wave that has hit us recently known as 'social media' has taken over our lives. This comes in the form of facebook, twitter, myspace, youtube etc...

The million dollar questions is; "what is the next big thing going to be"? I think I may have the answer. I have had an idea for sometime and I think it might potentially be useful for a lot more people. I cannot divulge any information about it right now but I hope the world will get to know it in 2011.

This idea would've never come out if I hadn't met this great, forward thinking individual last year. He just gave me all that confidence I needed and has backed me up so far to get this rolling. I am currently in the process of getting the wire frames designed. I've got a young team supporting me with the development.

Hopefully by this time next year, all of us would swap our ebaying time for this. Go figure! :)

Friday, 9 July 2010

Moat where art thou?

It's been the talk of the town for the last couple of weeks. A fugitive, a father, a killer, a lover...on the run from the one's he loves and searching for the one's he hates the most. Generally we tend to run towards the one's we love and runaway when we see people we hate. But this man is different. He lives rough and taunts the law enforcement officers by sending letters threatning them. The police have combed an entire village in Rothbury and so far have found a tent, a couple of mobile phones and a few people who are believed to have helped Mr. Moat to get away.

Why is this man from Northumbria on a killing spree? Well, a few months ago another man from Cumbria went on a similar rampage. It's not a common factoral killing spree from the one's born in a town's name that ends with 'umbria'. If that was the case, then the lake district will be Britains equivilant to Chicago.

Brits are generally tougher than some of their peers around the world but since of late, they seem to have embraced the gun and killing culture of their allies over the Atlantic. This change in culture is not sudden but it seems to have popped in all of a sudden. Could it be another outcome of the dreaded recession? Are people getting more and more preassurised by their responsibiities or is it a matter of not having a proper work-life balance?

What ever it is, violence seem to be raising its ugly head in Britain. People are resorting to guns instead of mutual respect and life in blighty seems to have changed quite dramatically during the last few years. Destiny cannot be changed overnight but if society is going to accept a gun crime as a routine occurance, then a few more Raul's will emerge from the moats of this recession very soon.

Friday, 26 March 2010

The legal immigrant (short story)

It was another fast drive along the M4 for Liana and her night partner, John who was still coughing away as he was recovering from his autumn flu but he knew if he wasn’t quick tonight, a few innocent lives could be lost. He was informed by Nick from the highways agency that some traffic was building up near Heathrow, so John switched on the ever so famous blue lights of his vehicle. There were many thoughts on Liana’s mind as they whizzed past various motorway signs.

Liana was a nurse employed by the NHS who was doing her internship at the Hounslow A&E. Last week she learnt that the Hounslow branch generally responded to emergencies in Middlesex but today she was in an ambulance that was driving like a bullet towards Maidenhead in Berkshire.

In her line of work, Liana knew not to ask too many questions, but even she knew that Maidenhead did not belong to the Hounslow A& E. Then again, she was thinking only for her self because she just remembered how annoyed John was when he was asked to accompany Liana to Maidenhead on this distress call. The first thing that John said was the staple four letter swear word and then a sentence that Liana would only hear in a nasty old western drama.

John was a person who would never go out of his way to do anything. He definitely was in the wrong line of work, Liana thought. Then again, he had served the NHS for nearly 20 years. Maybe he was bored with his job, but what ever it was he had no time to ponder as today’s call came right from the top. The director of the branch, Rebecca Lee herself called John and asked him to drive the ambulance. This was quite odd John thought. But even he knew not to ask too many questions from the director.

John wasn’t happy to have an immigrant intern to be his night partner that day. He was utterly dismayed to see this petite girl getting onto the ambulance with him. For a minute he thought she was not going to make it to the ambulance as she slipped on the long corridor that led to the emergency car park. ‘Careless little girl’ he thought.

Liana had a very steep learning curve in her new job as a nurse. She always saw the good in people and when she was young, everyone used to say she had a kind heart. In the back of her mind, she always wanted to become a doctor. She studied bio science for her A/L’s back in Srilanka, where she was born and bread for over 21 years. Life wasn’t easy for her back then. She lost her father when she was quite young and was brought up by her mother who struggled to make ends meet on her own. Liana had an elder sister who managed to get into a local university in Colombo. She was studying architecture which was one of the lengthiest courses in the local curriculum. Liana on the other hand didn’t get enough marks to get into the medical college, so she did a course in nursing and worked in a private hospital until she was offered a work permit to go to UK. There was massive human resource erosion in the country. Everyone wanted to go abroad and make money. For Liana, it wasn’t the money it self. It had been a struggle for her all through out her life. She did not know a world beyond problems. Her poor mother was now ailing and with her sister still at college, Liana knew she had to become the bread winner of her family.

She met a traveler from the UK called Nathaniel at the A&E in Colombo once. He had tripped over in his hotel room and had a broken wrist. Liana looked after him. He was a young man who had quite a good knowledge about the world. He was quite an interesting character whose charm and wit had taken him a long way all throughout his travels. It was whilst talking to him that Liana found out that U.K had a dearth of qualified nurses. This prompted her to search for more information on visiting the U.K. After 3 months of meeting Nathaniel, Liana’s work permit to U.K was granted and here she was now, working for one of the most prestigious health care services in the world.

The ambulance suddenly came to a screeching halt. If not for the seat belt, Liana would have flown through the windscreen. Some colourful words flew out from Johns’ mouth as he overtook the mini that blocked their way. They passed a massive electronic gantry that said 12 minutes to Maidenhead. The traffic was steadily building up but the speed of the ambulance did not change.

They were just about to turn off to junction 8/9 when Liana spotted a man desperately trying to pull out someone from what looked like an expensive sports car. When the ambulance closed in, this man came running towards it and started yelling. Apparently the man in the overturned sports car had tried to over take his little micra which was now visible on the slip road. According to the owner of the micra, as soon as the expensive sports car overtook the small hatch back, it swerved and toppled over. Liana could see the small micra on the slow lane of the motorway and realized that the on coming traffic might create another accident. She requested the man to move his car to the emergency lane and moved closer to the over turned sports car. Inside was a man who was definitely in his early 30’s wearing a nice suit who was desperately trying to breathe through the smoke. He had deep cuts in one of his arms and legs. Liana managed to free the man from his seat belt and the man slithered through the front passenger side window which was broken into pieces.

As Liana tried pulling the wounded man out of his expensive car, John parked the ambulance on one side of the slip road and came running towards the scene of the accident. The moment he saw the face of the slithering creature, Johns’ face turned white. Liana didn’t see this sudden change of emotion in John’s face. She was hoping that the smoke from the toppled car would diminish and the man in the nice suit would be safe. To her surprise the smoke stopped but she could hear an ambulance speeding away from them. This is when she realize that John had sped away in the ambulance. “Why did he do that”? There was no time to ponder. Liana saw the deep cut in the mans arm and tried to find a clean piece of cloth to stop the bleeding. She had no choice but to take a strip of her white blouse as the emergency care kit was in the ambulance. She tied it around the mans wounds to stop the bleeding and then pulled the man away from the accident.

The man was trying to tell something to her but she couldn’t quite make out what he was on about. Suddenly a set of 4x4’s came whizzing towards them and a few people got off and came running towards them. One of them shouted out, “Mr. Dick, are you alright”? Even before the man could reply, there were plenty of flash lights going off. This is when Liana realized that they were surrounded by Paparazzi. These people weren’t interested about the man’s wellbeing. They just wanted a picture of him. Liana had to take immediate action. She ran towards the abandoned micra which still had its keys in the ignition. She drove it towards the mob who was clicking away with their cameras. The paps took cover as she slammed the breaks of the small hatchback. By this time the injured man was up and was looking around to find a known face. Liana opened the passenger side door and signaled him to get in. Without thinking twice, Liana did an impossible 360 and pressed on the accelerator. She drove past the paparazzi frenzy and took a left turn towards the A340. She had been on this road before but never had she driven on her own. There was a mad rush of adrenaline pumping through her body. She knew she had to get this man away from the cameras and to a hospital as fast as she could.

Dick felt a bit dazed and fainted twice in the car. This was due to the loss of blood. He looked at Liana and gave a very bemused look. Liana could now see the massive 4x4’s following her. It reminded her of something out of the discovery channel where a young Deer cub was being chased by a pack of wolves. Liana managed to pass a few traffic lights just in the nick of time and managed to loose the paps for 5 minutes. This gave her enough time to squeeze through the traffic in front. She was now in front of the Hounslow A&E. She drove the car right into the corridor that led to the emergency car park and pressed on the breaks bringing the car to a screeching halt. Luckily there was an unattended wheel chair outside and Liana didn’t spare a moment. She quickly managed to get Dick onto it and pushed him into the A&E. Liana’s colleague Esther who was near the reception and hearing the commotion, came running into help her. Esther managed to open the emergency theatre door where they could see men in masks waiting for their next emergency victim. Liana felt relieved when she saw them. She knew her job was done. Dick held her hand as if to thank her for all what she had done for him.

Everything was coming back to her now. John leaving the scene, the paparazzi, her crazy drive to the hospital… So many questions sprung up in her mind but were disturbed by the loud news bulletin which came out of the ceiling hung TV. The news presenter looked a bit ruffled by what he had to read on the tele prompter. He paused for a minute and then started slowly. “The leader of the British National Party, Mr. Dick Frin met with an accident on the M4 whilst driving back to his constituency after taking part in a controversial BBC news night programme this evening”. Things were beginning to be clear inside Liana’s mind now. She had just saved the life of a leader of one of the most hated political parties in the country; the BNP. Liana just remembered one of her colleagues telling her long time ago that the media should not give these racist parties any coverage. Liana responded to him by saying if they were racists, then the best thing to do was to let them appear on television so that the public would get to know about their real cause and motivations. After all, it’s a democratic country and we should allow freedom of speech, even though this freedom will be categorically misused by them.
Liana still couldn’t understand why John left the scene, leaving her to deal with the situation. Maybe it had to do something with her wife who left him and got married to a staunch BNP supporter. It does sound a bit petty, but John was a very stubborn man.

This whole thing certainly has been a surreal experience for Liana.
The following morning’s papers had some great headlines. One of them had this in its front page as the main headline ‘Indigenous BNP leader saved by migrant nurse’.

Monday, 8 February 2010

Where is home?

A question that is asked by many but only a few have an answer to it. The migration of humans and the advancements in communications technology means that we are closer to each other than we have ever been. However, why do we always yearn to go home when the time comes? Is your home the place you were born? If that's the case, for an American kid under social care, his home could be a hospital. If your home is where you grew up, then he would be lost as he would've lived in many households in his life time. Some say that a house is not a home until people start living in it but does that mean you want to go back there at any given moment in time?

A man sitting next to a fireplace watching white flakes falling down from his front window might think that this is not his home. At least he knows what his home is not. Life poses man with strange but with interesting questions. It all depends on how man responds to them. Most of us talk about our home in high esteem as it gave us a lot of fond memories. But for some, it could be the other way round.

Life is all about moments. A home is where we've had most of these moments. It could be good, bad or life changing. We endeavour to visit these moments again and again by being there in person or in memory. Home is where life was a beautiful song. The water tastes differently than anywhere else in the world. Home is where you are ushered with eternal love. Home is where you are accepted for who you are. Home is where you want to go back even after you've run away. Home is like a boomerang that whizzes past your ears when ever you hear a similar voice. It might be in the north pole or in a slum in India. Home is where you want it to be.

And that' where I'll be soon....

Monday, 28 December 2009

Music, Lyrics and Religion

I just googled ‘music and lyrics the movie’ and there were over 36 million resulting pages/articles. Now that’s impressive by any online standard. During the movie there is a scene where a cheesy teeny pop star by the name of Cora using a seated statue of Buddha as her main background/stage props. The image of Buddha has all of a sudden become this chic commodity, something that Europeans have embraced for all the wrong reasons.

The image of Buddha has been used in many contexts in the recent past that includes bars, music, films and even as a sign that divides the male and female toilets at a restaurant in Germany.

We don’t come across ‘Jesus bars/pubs’ or the head of Jesus being used as an ornament in a garden. But why are eastern symbols, especially of Buddha’s used in such weird ways? I really don’t know the answer to this. As a man of the world, I know that some people like to receive attention even at someone else’s expense. Moreover, I know that this is a day and age where most men lack originality so they get caught up in trying to be creative by using a widely respected belief totally out of context.

I was watching the music and lyrics movie with wifey today and as mentioned above, one of the scenes had a massive statue of Buddha as a prop on stage for a cheesy rock concert. Once the statue turned, out came a lass clad in mere rags from the back of the statue. Imagine if the prop was of Lord Jesus and if a woman wearing a bikini sprung out of his back? Will this be accepted by the pontiffs around the world?

Then again, we live in a democratic world and freedom of expression is a right that anyone can exercise. How ever what people tend to forget is that this right has to be exercised responsibly without undermining or hurting someone else’s belief.

Buddhism is not a religion, it’s a teaching, hence there’s lack of control and more chances of it being misused for pleasure of another. A person who sees differently can always misuse someone else’s belief. Maybe that’s why Hitler used the Hindu symbol ‘swastika’ as the symbol for the Nazi party of Germany.

The love for ancient symbols is one way of trying to find one’s origins. For some others it’s a way of being creative. What ever it is, man’s love for curiosity and stupidity hangs on a mere thread and his love for attention will not slip away to the doldrums that easily.

For a pessimist, this movie would be an utter humiliation but for the optimist in me, the Google search I did gave me some hope. In a day and age where curiosity creates interest, having 36 million people search for a movie that has a scene with a cheesy singer with her background prop as Lord Buddha is promising because if 1% of those 36 million searches for Lord Buddha, that makes it 360,000 hits for Buddhism.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

The elephant's grave yard

It's a funny world...this corporate life. It's a big money making machine that get's you involved in the process and changes your whole outlook. Sometimes it even changes your personality. Why the sudden anger towards the corporate world you may ask. Well it's not a sudden thing but something that has been brewing for a long time. Even while I'm having this thought, there’s a twat in clutches walking around the building saying 'he's milking it', which means he is using the opportunity to gain undue advantage.

The corporate world is such that, the people who do work their heart out never get appraised properly where as the plonkers who are a bit mouthy tends to go to the top. Well...I shouldn't generalise I guess, but I thought the companies in good old blighty would be forward thinking. Sadly, that's not the case. Having worked for a couple of reputed companies so far, (not trying to boast by the way), I'm yet to meet a manager who knew what he/she was talking about. They are all good at talking but hopeless in planning and managing.

My current organisation however is an elephant’s graveyard. There is a myth that all elephants go to one place to die. If anyone wanted a picture to go with this, my current organisation is it. There are people who should be at home watering their plants, instead they're bothering everyone here by poking their fingers into things they know nothing about. And then we also have the ones who couldn't make it to the top during their younger days, now trying to make their mark.

Oh this life is hilarious. Coming from a third world country, how much did we struggle to create sales. We had only 5% of the total population who could spend on what we sold. Out of the 5%, another 2% were spoilt so much for choice. There were some elephants who were left in these companies too. But they were all political elephants.

As they say, beggars can't be choosers. I chose this path and I have to live with it or work around it. Until I start my own graveyard that is. Let's see where I'll end up in my quest to find my grave yard.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Children in need

It's a big show tonight. Everyone's collecting money for the kids. The last time I switched on the TV, I heard Terry announcing some staggering amount which was collected within the space of a few hours. Everyone's been chipping in with their pounds and not pennies tonight. Gary Barlow had organised a massive do at the Albert hall and ended up being on stage with former band mate Robbie Williams. All young and old seem to be getting together for a common cause tonight.

It’s an interesting time in good ol’ blighty. For 364 days of the year everyone hates kids but once a year everyone collects 365 million quid for them. The mood in the country has definitely swung towards the better, at least for today. They keep on show casing kids who looked after their parents and kids who have had trouble during the year gone by. These kids are the hero’s of the night. The money collected apparently is spent towards making these kids happy for a day. Nothing against the kids but this money collected, which is similar to the GDP of a small African state could feed millions of kids world wide. I know it's not the time to talk about the distribution of wealth but one tends to wonder about this vast disparity.

For a society that sends a greeting card to their parents once a year and calls it mothers day or fathers day, this is a big deal. I just wish if these people could be sent to the so called third world countries to show how kids treat their parents. They’ll be amazed to see the bond kids have with their parents. Those so called third world societies are very rich in culture and treat their elders and look after them. In a similar fashion, the parents look after their children and devote their whole lives to these kids.

For this new breed of blights who follow celebrities instead of a religion and think death is a good career move, they certainly could learn a thing or two from the rest of the world.