Monday, August 30, 2010

Being Myself

The following article is not coherent and cohesive, but depicts my thought processes which are random fluctuations of my mind, sometimes strewn together by different feelings that emanate from my acute observation of life.

I was not born smart.Neither did education and experience enrich me in a way that I could be any smarter than just imitating people who seemed to have a lifestyle that I was desperate to attain, consciously and unconsciously(sometimes). For me, it has always been extremely puzzling to make a choice or to decide upon something. I get baffled at the slightest of difficulties and ponder about the implications and in the end, the work does not get done.

I wanted to share my precarious situation with all; those who know me well, are aware of it & those who have guessed it, I just want to assure them that it is not wrong. Interestingly, as I look back, at every stage, right from the very beginning, I found it very hard to do things, which people claimed to have been able to when they were of my age and what was expected of me seemed to be (unbelievably) unattainable.

But, there was a turn of events in my life when something different happened. I thought that I was getting smart. I felt I was getting to understand things in ways like never before and started developing confidence about myself. But to add to that, I started valuing hard work and even virtues like dedication and consistency. My value system was starting to become like people who ended up to be successful, I believed. I was developing faith on my views and opinions.

Of all that has happened to me, mostly they have happened in the academic front in my life. I somehow had no other life. So, naturally, that turn of events occurred in my school life. It's not that I have done academically good. But it's like,I was comfortable with playing cricket and never really minded playing Ranji lifelong even though fruits were sour.

I was trying to solve some textbook problems and I could solve them after sitting with them for hours and days, but nevertheless I could solve them like never before. I solved more and more and I almost exhausted the problem sets & other textbooks too. This new-found confidence, I believed defined me. I started to extrapolate and manipulate. I solved more problems for many more years till I landed up in an engineering college. During and after which, I solved none. Of late, I believe a problem is best solved when left to itself.

The confidence slowly dissolved due to lack of realization and gave way to confusion. With age, confusion accumulated and transformed into cynicism. Cynicism brought more cynicism and led to rationality and absolute rationalization. This makes a person insane. However I am not one. There is a simple reason for that. I am not capable to link up all the logic together at the same time to make me feel miserable enough to become insane.

I was talking with somebody when I just stopped listening to what that person was saying. Instead I had a realization. It seemed interesting to me. It would not to most people. Because, it is a little scary. I found a great analogy to what goes on around me, to people like me who are born in such times in such lands to such people with what I am going to talk about hereafter. It at least involves a more glorified character of a military man, who toils more and suffers no less than me.

Imagine a little boy who read the newspaper much to grow up to watch TV News Channels and then patronized by Daddy, ended up in military school with misplaced national sentiments. And he did not know that he was destined to have a hot wife, like all army men do. However, he trained hard and got through the school into the real army. He was unlucky it seems. There was war. Our military boy trained harder and was waiting to go to the front. He was struggling within himself, thinking about the glory a war can bring, the great experience that he will have and the pain and misery of course.

He knew not, he would not be called to take part in the war. It was not that he was incompetent, but the war was over. His country had lost the war. He did nt get the chance to take part, but he was still on the losing side.

Imagine yourself being him. Do you feel good? I don't. It feels strange to be him. Should you be happy that you didn't get killed in the war, should you be sad that you did not kill anyone? Should you be furious that you lost or would you bless your stars that at least you were still alive? What would you do? I would not feel anything special, than what I feel on any average day.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

To Find a Rented Apartment in the Capital City

More than clothes, one needs shelter. You can be without clothes in your own house, but to be without a house to stay, even if you have a full range of clothes, is not very amusing.

I was not very particular to write anything about house hunting in Delhi. But someone requested me to. Then I thought I can write down a few things, because anywhere house hunting is quite colourful. More so, in a metro city. Thanks to some friends, I got a shelter temporarily in Gurgaon which gives me some luxury with respect to time to choose and not to settle for something (very un-Indian) My office is in some desolate place in Gurgaon, still to keep up to our expectations of doing things during our job life which we could not do much during college, we have unanimously concurred to the need for staying in Delhi.

The first thing, I mean the first menacing thing that comes to my mind when I think of getting a rented apartment or otherwise, is the Broker. The brokers have come of age, nevertheless. Some of them are 'agents', some are property consultants and some are still poor old brokers. Having had the experience of dealing with people called brokers at Chennai, I stood in no deeper waters in New Delhi and indeed it was no more difficult. At least, I can speak and negotiate in not so alien languages.

So, the boring part was to search for the listings in the different websites on the net, which I finally achieved after the first day's laziness. Thanks to my joblessness and lack of restlessness, which is surprising to me, as well. Prad and I got the numbers of the brokers, spoke with them and decided to embark on our voyage to meet them the day after, on 15th August ie.

It is not so pleasant weather we are having and I hope the weather doesn't continue further! Even if it just drizzles, Delhi roads get flooded these days and Gurgaon becomes more of Gore-Gaon. Amidst all that, Prad managed to catch cold from somewhere. So, with the rains pouring, he stayed back indoors and I left for Vasant Kunj.

Having stayed in South India, and seeing Bangalore and Chennai, the areas outside the residential complexes in Vasant Kunj looked like as developed as the villages of West Bengal which voted for Congress or BJP. Prad has been trying to convince me that Vasant Kunj is indeed one of the most posh localities and I have been trying to understand that. The rate of assimilation of that understanding is similar to when I first tried to solve combinatorics problems in school without having read the text book. I saw a few DDA flats in Sector A, Pocket B & C and if I had not seen the two girls leaning off the balcony in one of the flats, I would have indeed never understood Vasant Kunj like I never understood Combinatorics till date. Anyway, so much trouble for such visual delights, did not really motivate me. I have become a fanatic for civic amenities like roads, because much of the time I am walking when I have nothing more to do (which is equal to the time when I am not in office). So I dissuaded Prad of Vasant Kunj stating even Gurgaon is livable compared to that place, unless you really are ready to pay some huge chunk of money every month, know some people over there and also have an imported 4 WD SUV that can survive the roads. No point for us, who will eventually walk out in good clothes and catch the auto to luxury.

So what then? We decided to look for apartments in and around Safdarjung Enclave, Malviya Nagar, Hauz Khas keeping in mind the fact that ultimately we have to go Gurgaon every weekday unless my/their true talents and potentials are recognized. Prad had enough of sleep in the meanwhile, all that his tall structure needed to get back to being restless again. So on 16th, we contacted some Mr. Raj of ShaamKo Properties and a few other brokers and fixed appointments on various hours of the day like true professionals (amateurs). Much due to the metro newly built, Gurgaon has got connected to Delhi finally for a lot of young people.

Not breaking the fast that started the previous night, we set out to find a place to stay in New Delhi. We just managed to get into the station before it started pouring heavily and boarded the metro at Sikandarpur. After getting down at Qutub Minar, we were stranded due to the rains and waited till eternity before the rains halted and the autos queued up near the station. Meanwhile, we enjoyed watching Delhi getting a little wet in the rain and the smoke rising not from the grounds but the lighted end of my cigarette.

After Chennai, any autofare seems reasonable to me. And happily, we left for the well known landmark Kamal Cinema in the Safdarjung Enclave area. We were jubilant having crossed the junction near the Qutub Minar metro station without any vehicle splashing the sewer waters from what seemed like the Yamuna redirected, on us, sitting inside the auto.

Mr. Raj was a healthy fellow with broker like eyes and mouth that spoke the language of Delhi. He showed us a few apartments in and around a branch of the DPS in that area. Much to my amazement, properties in Delhi are really costly even for rentals if you want a decent locality. For us, we were looking more for convenience than class (don't know why). So, we were not really excited of all that we saw and were considering Malviya Nagar to be the next place to see around. In the meantime, Prad's frugal eating habits led us to Deepak Dhaba, next to Rajinder da Dhaba just by the Kamal Cinema.

I ordered for butter parathas with extra butter to make up for the lacklustre life that I am having and also dal to boost up my belief in my own abilities. Prad, confident of himself, settled for Egg Rice on the road side Dhaba. A broker called us up as we were busy devouring the late lunch with some raw onions while standing. Another guy, standing right across us overheard our talks and asked if we were looking for apartments for rent; he told he has one right near to that place and ordered a sub-ordinate who was caught unaware that his master was around, to get us to his house near to the fly-over. I ordered for more butter to be added to my dal as I was also perspiring a little while enjoying the awesome parathas and the hope of getting a furnished apartment within our budget. The house-owner started to blabber about what all he had in his house and that made us quite excited even though we are not totally gullible.

So we caught another auto rickshaw, by then tired of telling people we don't have any vehicles with us. Mohammadpur it was! I knew this place. I had been in and around that place last year. This seemed funny to me, to be back to that place once again. But, it would not to you, because of course you would not know the reason. The man who had come with us, led us into a small alley by the tomb at Mohammadpur. By taking a few turns through the tortuous lane, it all seemed to be so much like some secret way of the Mughal Era, we reached a tall apartment with the sky almost not visible from the ground level. We took the steps and kept on climbing till the 4th floor.But to my glee, we had rose above the surrounding concrete and between us and the sky there were nothing except the inability to fly.

The apartment was right next to an old Sultanate monument and seemed like an encroachment. However, we forgot all that as we got inside. The comfort that the huge sofa sets promised and the sight of the spacious rooms with nice bedding and the other accessories and furniture temporarily quenched the in-satiety that has been burning ever since inside us. The terrace was terrific. It offered a full 240 degrees of view that was good and another upsetting 120 degrees that lay on the opposite minor half. It seemed quite a reasonable house to stay for us. Specially, the easy accessibility and the location really made us to think that we have found our place! Somewhat, ecstatic and yet apprehensive, we called up the house-owner who invited us to his office, near to the dhaba where we met.

Mr. Radheshyam is a rich businessman. He has a number of Dhabas, bars, etc located in and around Safdarjung and stays in Vasant Kunj himself. We did not quite understand why he was offering the apartment at the price he settled with us finally. The place looked good enough to attract a lot of people. However, during the long conversation over a cup of tea, glass of cold water, peanuts and the beer, that could have been unless Prad was so unwell, I could get that he somehow wanted a steady income from this apartment without any extra hassles. So, I guess we being working class bachelors, with docile faces provided him a reasonable solution for his concern. We talked to the other guy, who was supposed to stay with us and confirmed our deal.

While returning, Prad and I had to decide between Select CityWalk and Khan Market to spend our evening with each other :D. I suggested that I had enough of the humidity and the heat and took Prad to Saket. We roamed around aimlessly for a while, before drinking some water and finally settling down near to a programmed to play Piano. Thereafter we talked about the usual stuff and speculated about the apartment and its possible loopholes. We roamed a little more, this time with a more specific aim of killing some time till it was a little less warm outside. Subsequently we made our way back to Gurgaon in the same way we had come. Then, a little more happy and a little less worried, we got inside a McDonalds in Gurgaon to have the dinner. I had some Pepsi and my denial levels had reached its brim. So I tipped over to the other side and gave fundae to a seemingly less restless Prad for all that he had gone through. The day ended followed by a deep sleep till the next day that began at 2 pm for me.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Stint @ Chennai

This blog is destined to be quite long, so unless you enjoy reading or are obliged to for some unknown reason, you may skip it, and I am not going to make it any shorter thinking about you.

I have been staying in Chennai for an year and a month, that started on 3rd July, 2009 and is destined to end tomorrow on the 13th of August,2010. Incidentally, I am moving to New Delhi, while India prepares for the Independence Day. (unrelated)

How did it all begin? Well, I had the least little idea about what to do after I finished with my college in the May of 2009. All that I knew was I had to get money. I could't live off my parents any further. Anyway, I got a job after the first few days of campus placements (Dec'08). I had no idea what the job would be like. I didn't even know where the posting would be. I knew all are equally sucking, some more sugar-coated. I came to know during the interviews, that I ll be deported to the southern part of India, somewhere near Chennai. I got selected somehow. At that point of time, everything seemed far off and I had some other things to worry about (to pass out of college, I had a feeling I could flunk in my final year project and stay for another year in KGP). I somehow had no clue what would save me from that, except some divine intervention, considering my own efforts in that direction were not much of a choice for me!

I did pass out of college.However by then, I was having a turmoil in my personal life, I was getting over that. I arrived at Chennai a couple of days before my joining date.

I would not spend much time bothering anyone including myself about what my job was like. I am trying to forget it. Infact, I would have to remember it again, when I land up for some interview in future and lie about what I learnt in the one year I worked in the company, where I did. But I just hope, I meet some chilled out person, with some sense, and a little sense of humour, who would recruit me one day and would not ask such questions. (In that 70s show, Steven Hyde gets one). But it's too much to ask for. Anyway, let's talk about something else.

What all comes to my mind tonight, when I look back over the last one year at Chennai, may be are the highlights of my stay over there. I can see some places flashing in my mind, some faces that come by and some desolate hours that are still haunting me.

I would not blabber about the obvious. Day to day life is not so much fun like a movie or a theater and not even similar to what we like to believe it is. I would skip the mundane stuff and the serious stuff that contributed to the major part of life, which I wish I could have done away without (but, it is never so anywhere).

Rather I would talk about the moments, the people, the places, the situations which made me feel a little excited or amazed or totally frustrated.

Anything in life can be broadly classified into two subsets, unless you are a hypocrite to the core or you really can possess and express the feeling of indifference. Those two discrete classifications are: you like it or you don't. I am sure of myself that I exhibit a lot of indifference in my own life towards certain things, fluctuating over time nonetheless. So, we would also talk about certain critical aspects of Chennai, which I am really indifferent to (I didn't care about).

The things about Chennai which I liked:

1. The sea:

Infact, I had to walk for some 5-8 mins from my place of stay and I reached the beach. It's an awesome luxury for someone who is "hydro-philic' like me. In fact, it was the right distance as for me, to light a fag and by the time I reached the beach, it just got over. I call it the optimum distance :P.

2. The Ladies Night at Ten Downing Street:

It was the first time in my life I crashed into some place where I was least invited. Ya, somewhere in August'09, Rajesh, Geetansh and I managed to get inside TDS by asking gals, whom we didnt know, to help us entering the pub, as stags were not allowed on the Ladies Night. Thereafter, we were never tired or demotivated to repeat it. And amazingly, as I look back, we did it successfully every time we tried. On a serious note, it's interesting to note how often success is just directly dependent on a wholehearted attempt. We did hit upon random gals. We never landed up behind the bars. But finally one day got kicked out. And there was Raj with me and Rajesh that day. We got back to Thiruvanmiyur, three of us on a single bike from 10 D directly. Thereafter, a little drunk as I was, I blabbered a lot of arbit (historic) stuff about Chengiz Khan lying on the beach. Intoxication made them to listen to me. Rationality drives people away from one another. Cheers to Rajesh Gupta!

3. La Magica at Mahabalipuram:

Any motorized vehicle would take you to Mahabs within an hour from Chennai, unless you met with an accident in between. We discovered an awesome place to stay(cheap and comfortable and with a sea view) and it had a sexy roof top restaurant that served no less awesome sea food along with chilled beer. It's right on the beach and you would find a lot of foreigners around you, which would be a "drooling factor" for married or unmarried, starved or well-fed Indians (men and women alike).

4. Murugan Idli Shop:

Quality food, extraordinary chutneys.

5. East Coast Road (ECR):

I lived in the eastern parts of India mostly and to me an Audi or BMW or a Mercedes convertible or a Volvo or a Chrysler are only brands whose logos I have been seeing for quizzing purposes. But to see them so regularly on road in India, was quite unexpected to me until I happened to stay close to the ECR.

6. Sea Shell on Gream's Road:

I have to give my thanks to Baba aka Swarnendu (in this birth) for grilling us often to taste the grilled chicken over there which ultimately I had for a couple of times before leaving Chennai. Also to mention the Arabian Falooda, was equally amazing.

7. Grounded at Adyar:

I started playing pool over here and mastered it to some unembarassing level soon. Thanks to Beriya & Mayank for company. I loved the sandwiches over here, specially the potato chips supplement.

8. Nungambakkam:

The first time I went to this place, I loved it. I liked it always. There was something about this place apart from the gals one can see over here, that made me feel good every time I did come over. Mocha was good, so was Casa Piccola and the myriad of shops and eateries in and around. Opal Inn at the Ranjith Hotel, next to the Taj Coromandal stands out to be the best eating place I have been to, in Chennai. A little ahead of that was the Calcutta Pan shop and Ganpat's. (Thanks to Anirud I came to know about these places)

9. The occasional train ride to Paranur (Mahindra World City):

In case I missed my office bus, the most convenient of all the horrible alternatives present was the local train from Guindy to Paranur/SP Koil. Nevertheless, how horrible it seemed from back at Thiruvanmiyur, the local train always had something in it, to cheer me up. Be it the occasional random Infy gals or the cool breeze blowing despite the blazing sun, or just my mp3 player. In extreme scenarios, I have the god given talent of finding a reason to be happy on board the train, to stand on the footboard and lean outward.

10. Pupil Burger at Besant Nagar & Elliot Beach:

These places are very much unlike to what someone who don't suggest you to go to Chennai thinks of it. I mean these are places where you feel a little elated may be due to some 'colonial' genetic impulses we have acquired/inherited. Basically, excellent location.

The Things about Chennai which I did not like:

1. The Auto Fares:

Well, the thumb rule in Chennai is to pay less than or equal to the half of the amount the Autowallas are going to demand. How you are going to arrive at that depends on your negotiation skills! A true test of character, one over which you can select your partner for sure.

2. The radio only aired one English channel and no Hindi radio station.

3. Mayajaal:

For God's sake, have mercy on us! They expect people to drive that far on ECR for Mayajaal!
It could be so much better, with so many people looking for a weekend getaway. So much potential to tap in the money people are wanting to spend to get over loneliness and dissatisfaction.

4. Ananthraman's Dogs:

The first house we put up in Tambaram was not quite great. To add to the woes, the landlord Mr. Ananthraman had two miserable dogs who never quite got used to anyone staying in their house and needed almost no provocation to jump at you or sniffle at you for your lifetime, till you got frustrated and just jumped off the terrace.

5. Rajkrishna Raman's obscure way of thinking and screwed up perspectives before he met me:

I think I have just explained myself above and later when he changed, I found it better in all respects.

6. The meetings with the Japanese (the i-meetings or video conferences):

Btw, I was working in Nissan. The worst experience was when some Japanese
came all the way to tell us how horrible India is (ie you are too) and that too blatantly. He could have sugar coated it like some Americans/Britishers would.

7. The spurious cigarettes and the TASMAC conspiracy:

There is a finitely large probability of finding spurious cigarettes in Chennai. An expert regular smoker can tell the difference.

Worse than that is, only liqour produced in Tamil Nadu can be sold inside the state. And, they produce only a limited range, that too only inferior quality ones. So for Vodka, you have Romanov, for beer, only KF and for whisky, Signature and at best, you get Teachers. There is nothing more. Or you go to some high end bar or pub to get your desired liqour that makes your senses flexible to the desired extent! This is quite horrible despite the fact, now a days, I don't consume much alcohol.

8. The ignorance of the people of the state about Busty:

Busty is known to the ordinary people as Sunil Kumar. However, for the fortunate ones, who have come to know about him, they have accepted his theory about " The world and The Stuff" and stand before him in awe. For the rest, I have much detest.
If you don't understand movies like Inception, then you need to meet Busty because much before it was screened, Busty had figured it out all about dreams and states in which our minds can stably dwell. To hell, those who dont know about Busty! The golden boy from Bangalore can be the next big thing in Chennai after Rajnikanth if his ideas are popularized and propagated through suitable media.

9. Landlords and house-owners who gave flats on rent, in general.

10. The Standing Junta in the Public Buses

Guys or junta in general would stand with their faces towards the left hand section of the bus, while standing on the right hand section of the bus on the aisle looking towards where the females would sit. Mostly, they would do it unconsciously I assume. But to me, it seemed odd, why people would stand with their back towards the passengers who are sitting, and their faces turned towards the other side. One generally keeps a watch if some one is getting up or not. This phenomenon is quite contrary to the standing configuration or posture maintained in a crowded Kolkata bus, where I hail from. Not that I mean people in Kolkata are any more civilized.

The things about Chennai which I am indifferent to:

1. The Language:

The most common cause of antipathy of a North Indian in a South Indian city is the Language.
I managed without any notable discomfort except for the one occasion when I had to shave my head due to some miscommunication between the barber and me over shaving my beard.

2. The Food:

I love Vadas and the occasional idli, even sometimes dosai too. I loved the poriyal and the more-something (no point even if I manage to pronounce it or spell it :P). But I would not miss them much, once I am out of Chennai.

3. The average looks of the female population:

Once someone important to me, said " The more the important the thing is, we don't discuss it". So I have made a habit of discussing things which have some significance in my life.
Well, after some torrid years in a sleepy beautiful town in West Bengal, however, the successful Kgpian expresses himself eloquently, the smell of abstinence does come out smoothly to any sensitive 'nosy' individual. Having acquaintances with people who would be otherwise ashamed to talk about their opinions in a public forum, despite the inner understanding among people about their opinions, I still remain quite indifferent to the average not so good looking females one encounters in the city of Chennai (leave the Tam Brams and the Mallus and the other migrants).

4. The people don't speak Hindi:

I know English. They speak English. We talked.

5. The Weather:

India is quite hot everywhere, except in the hills. And most of the population live in the plains. So India is a typically hot country, with high humidity in some places to accompany. Chennai is no exception and it's not a desert like Thar. So I didn't feel any more bad than I felt travelling in Kolkata or some other parts of India. As for winters, Chennai is comfortable, it's not freezing.
Otherwise, get an AC. I had one at my place of stay.

An year it was at Chennai that saw me growing in years and decaying as an individual as is the general rule. I had a lot of fun, a lot of agony, some isolation, some moments of glory, some bitterness, some struggles, some despair, some relief, quite a bit of freaking out, lot of frustration and a close escape on my bike ride to Pondicherry on 20th of December 2009 when I met with an accident. This was an year I read a lot of books, specially read about Nietzsche, got totally cynical, fought with people and raged war of words, enlightened myself and the people around me till they had enough of me. However, as all good things and bad things and everything else come to an end, my stint at Chennai is over for the time being.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Love, No Sex and a Little Dhoka

The content of the blog is a little personal, however, time has shifted enough in a direction that it can be put in a blog. This is not an attempt to eradicate my image of a pessimistic realist, I ll always be one. However, this is more of what can happen to you, if you can shed your fears and pretensions, as it happened to me once.

I once wrote a letter to someone, not in mail, but a handwritten one, which I happened to come across today, as I was packing my things. I felt, I should keep it safe in somewhere, which will not get misplaced as easily as a piece of paper can, over a period of time. Not that it always does.

For the many mails and letters and etc, that men have written to women, not all have got unanswered. Even this one, I wrote, got a fitting response. As far as the title of the post goes, it has got little to do with the content. I think that is the convention now a days. I just tried to play smart like them. The letter is unchanged as what I had written that day, to preserve what it does hold in it.

I am X, she is Y.


I woke up early today in the morning. I was feeling different from the other mornings. I realised a sense of longing towards you. I fight with myself to remain a man of zero expectations. But, couldn't today. It has been a wonderful experience to interact with you, especially over the last two days. I think you have provoked my imagination. I love the state of my mind. I love the feeling that I have experienced because of you. Keeping in mind of everything, I want to dream again after years. I'll miss you after you leave this place. I like to write. However, I am writing after five years. I spoke about what I expect of someone, whom I love yesterday. I want her to understand, appreciate, inspire and love me.I dont know whether you understand me, or appreciate me or love me. But the fact that I am writing today is a miracle for me. You have inspired me. Dreams have not ended well for me, mostly. But, several times in my life, I have dreamt about something or the other. However, time has taught me to suppress my dreams. Today I want to express my emotions.
Should I dream?
Your music, which I hear in my heart, will linger for a long time even if it's heard no more. But, I really wish to prolong this feeling and the sense of beauty of the dream I'm seeing with you.
What do you think about us, ie you and me?


The fitting response, that followed however was complex for me to understand at that point of time. I shall not make fun in this blog. So keeping in mind of the tempo of the blog, I wish to say that I do understand it better at this date.


We always believe that life is fair
No Matter how unfair we are -

Let me Believe that once again
& wish that it gives me
at least one more chance
to think, to ponder & still
after all that ......... follow
Our Instincts -

It was gr8 being with you. Hope to c ya soon.

Be yourself and get over that 'laziness' of not wanting to try things.


I wish to conclude by typing down a quote by Nietzsche and I'm not paraphrasing.

"The demand to be loved is the greatest of all arrogant presumptions."

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Life and Times of DK Bose :D

Disclaimer: All characters (mostly me and DK) appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

I had passed out of school at that point of time, and it was just before entering the college. It was afternoon and I was returning home after a day out at the JU Campus. I saw a very tall guy with curly hairs, blinking his eyes and coming towards me. I felt that I have seen him before. And, then when he smiled, I realised I knew him. I didnt remember his name may be, right there. But thereafter I never forgot.

This DK Bose story has so much potential, that I fear I may not be able to do justice to the plot. It ideally should go through multiple edits before one publishes it. But we would nt care for such formality and methodology, as it is very un-DKB0se-ish. He would rather copy and paste a story from somewhere, and replace all the names with DK Bose, etc etc and publish it, if at all he needs it to.

It was during my college days that I came to know much about him, as he was studying something similarly horrible to what I was doing. He regretted it much more than what I do. However, the regrets were on a sinusoid from his side, specially he would hit the crests subsequent to talking to the more fortunate guys who were not, where we were.

DK, as we would call him henceforth, used to have 3 basic qualities ingrained in him, by some Gandolf the White, which follow:
1. DK's Frugality: Save money, whenever possible and spend money only when satisfaction is guaranteed (like say sex) :P
2. The DK Way: 101 ways to get back money if he owed from someone without letting him know that he wants it
3. DK's awesomeness: No this is not about money. DK Bose used to live in denial (similar to me, but he does not like to admit). So, he had his own ways of cooking up ideologies that could validate his denial strategies. Often, there would be total failure in sustaining the strategy, leading to intense physical activities (like gymming, cycling, etc etc ;) on his part along with very ardent wiki research and documentary hunting.

Over and above, DK used to be very amicable and intrinsically docile (not on the surface) which gave me the chance to get along well with him and thus today, I am able to furnish the details.

The highlights of my acquaintance with DK Bose:

1. The cycle trip on the DVC side of Kharagpur in 1st year:

DK told me that there is a wonderful hangout spot on the DVC side. I trusted him because he was handsome then. Hangout in our parts of the world, ie KGP and similar places, meant places where there was no Junta, a little shady, breeze blowing, railway tracks, a little greenery and random rustic chicks from the north-east. But anyway, we started out on our cycles and took a left turn at the main gate and were speeding past the walls of our college boundary. Abruptly, the road bifurcated into the normal tarred road and a pebble-strewn muddy village road that led to some nowhere. We of course took the path less taken. My cycle was my pride, his own was not so much of DK's. So I was leading. He asked me to take the next right and we maneuvered our way past chickens, and Santhali women carrying their baskets. We met the blind end. But DK explained that we have to cross the fields of barren lands on the cycle to go to the shady cool hangout spot of ours. Eventually I stopped seeing a trench of muddy, dark sewer water that separated us from the endless vistas. DK interrupted me and convinced me to follow him. He somehow managed to cross with his long legs and huge stature that could easily lift his cycle. I fell in the trench and my feet got drenched in the stinky waters and by now, our trousers were spotted with the muddy imprints which were stinking like hell. We did nt find the ultimate destination so cool as DK promised. Somehow we came back and bathed to normalcy along with our cycles. I was pissed off, but DK intervened with the line that created history for the upcoming years of our relationship. "It was a new place."

2. The SF 1st year phone call:

DKB had called up some "long lost" friend who was a girl during our first cultural fest. He introduced himself on the phone, saying who he was and what he was doing and if she would blah blah blah. DKB's middle name was funny for a guy who looked so cool. Additionally when he told the gal that he was studying some XYZ course in Engineering in the ABC dept of our institute, before asking the girl out, stands out tall like him. However, the gal had already "cut the line". (though there are many versions available of this, but this is one, more probable of them). After that I never found DK talking to a gal, when I was around.

3. The trip to Panchalingeswar Temple in our seniour years:

DK had convinced me and another guy after serious debate over the weekend trip, that Balasore is the most interesting place in and around KGP with the maximum tourist spots. After catching the early morning Dhauli express, we landed in the hot and sultry Balasore, only to find the more intense Auto Rickshaw-wallahs pouncing upon us. We had as usual wikied things. So we knew where we were going. We always knew about that, only everytime we got surprised that things on the wiki and reality seldom matched to our expectation levels.( I stopped expecting things subsequently). We sped in our auto-rickshaw towards the sacred lingam, Panchalingeswar, as an act of penance that would slowly get revealed as we were nearing the spot. There was no road to Panchalingeswar. It was being built. "If you want to go, you can try."We tried. We reached half-baked and almost dying of backache. We got asskicked royally. DK was feeling OK. I was furious due to the heat and frustration and my usual hunger. The other guy had got numb out of pain. DK was smiling, saying it is a new place only. I could have killed him right there, if I were as frustrated as I would be in later years, or if I had a gun. We climbed up the 100 stairs to find a typical temple, which was dilapidated and was undergoing some cement work. Few married couples were praying to God over there, I dont know why. Marriage is a difficult discipline to follow, but those who had reached Panchalingeswar surely would succeed in their own ventures.
We left the place and went to Chandipore. Thereafter we never trusted DK, despite he continuing to grow skinnier and more handsome.

4. The Kolkata Episode post KGP:

There was one day when DK had told his parents that he went out with DJ, and also DJ that he was out with me. It was a red-letter day :D. If it's not funny for you, let it be not :P.

5. DK's wardrobe over the years:

DK had a distinct set of clothes for Kolkata and KGP. What he wore in KGP, were generally what he picked from some Hurricane or flood relief camps when nobody was looking. Or, those which he had bought in Esplanade during the last day of the Mega Sale from the corner shop of the Muslim Uncle. He however is generally very upset when his wardrobe is publicly referred to, but I have this bad habit of upsetting people :P. DK's other set is however the ones, which he bought when he was in school and his parents loved him much to buy him whatever clothes he wanted to. However, DK-nomics or DK's frugality,however you like to call it, would finally take over him, not to replenish his wardrobe with something new after school. These things have changed recently, so if you, by some chance (remote), are a girl, then DK has changed for the better. DK's priced possession includes his old Newport jeans, which may be the last specimen of Newport anyone has. Other auctionable wardrobe items are better not explicitly discussed in a public forum (:P). DK got this TIMEX watch when he was in class 6 and till today it runs fine. People have asked him about it in airports and clubs, and he said, they generally appreciated it.

6. DK's vision:

This is not similar to the objectives and the vision of Abdul Kalam type of things. This is simple. If DK can see or not. DK can see, you fools. DK is a little myopic, but you would not see him in his specs if you knew him in college days. However, very interestingly, he gave up wearing contact lenses once he left kgp, and would often wear the thick specs :|. This is very astonishing as lenses are not only cool but also good for the eyes, as far as I remember! Someone, who used to wear the contacts in the heat and dust and desert life of Kgp, that person , going back to glasses in an urban set-up has baffled me to this date. However, he wears the contacts mostly when he is wearing the treasured apparels of his, which he gives for ironing and maintains like the platinum-iridium scale for the length of the metre in somewhere in Europe.

7. DK's cosmetics:

If you could only see DK going to bath! With a handful or arms-full I should say, set of hair cleaners and shampoos, etc etc (:D :D), DK ventures into the bath once in 3-4 days. Generally, the dust in his curly locks doesnt bother him. The mysteries that remain locked in his locks have been unlocking since his days in KGP, but DK has started taking adequate measures, that the rate of unlocking is under check :). Dolly, an Axomia, who despite being smart, did nt make it to DU, takes a lot of pleasure in DK's and my situation, I presume :D. Other cosmetic items are nonetheless same for all the people who dont take regular bath.

8. DK's food habits:

DK liked to eat anything that came cheap and was tasty when he was in college. Be it oily roll, or semi-cooked momos, or even VS canteen stuff. The most fascinating story however goes back to 1st year again, when DK and a few of us had a nite out and decided to go to sleep as we got tired by 7 in the morning. DK stayed awake till 7.30 to have the Dosa in the hall mess (Dosa on Sat was supposedly good) and then went to sleep. The utter loyalty to mess food on DK's part has often been related to his frugal ways and not wasting money on oily expensive stuff, which made the majority happy. DK often asked some of us to go the sweet shop for having sweets outside the main gate. It was only afterwards, I discovered that this was a master-stroke from DK over making us pay for his sweets in place of the balance amount which we were supposed to give him back.

DK Bose is destined to remain cool as long as he remains a bachelor. Some of us fear that we may be deleted from his phone memory and email accounts, once he lands his large fists on some rich upper class Hottie sooner or later. Till that day, we(at least I will) may keep our fingers crossed so that DK does something unique to give me an opportunity to kill time upon.