I’ve never really taken to English songs, I don’t know why, but one particular song has neither left my playlist nor my mind in the longest.
Vienna waits for you – Billy Joel. He has written quite a few gems, but the lyrics in this song resonate. Soak in them, if you choose to listen to the song – I’ve shared a link below. “Slow down, you crazy child, you so ambitious for a juvenile, but if you’re so smart, tell me why are you still so afraid?”
The poignancy of the thought, so effortlessly captured. It questions the insecurity, the rush, the lack of time to look back and catch your breath. And whether it is worth the while.
Give it a listen if you want to be transported. https://youtu.be/xGUQlLD5hDU
On a parallel but not unrelated note, this song and “Before Sunrise” remain two compelling reasons to visit Vienna, sooner than later.
So, starting today, out of a need to capture my thoughts, for they are becoming all too fleeting, I’m going to pen some thoughts before I crash for the night, every night, or as frequently as I have random thoughts. Which means quite often.
The idea for this actually came when I was talking to Purvi, a person I attribute my blogging to, in the first place.
We wanted to co-author a blog called certainuncertainty. For that’s the only thing, well, certain about life.
Funnily, just a philosophical thought, back in those days, but so much more of a reality today. And it is this reality which strikes us everyday.
This reality that I will want to capture through my notes.
Do you observe the subtle changes in your personality?
The little shifts in habit, tweaks in the way you speak, the small gestures that would go unnoticed earlier seem so obvious now.
It puts in perspective why your parents started behaving the way they do.
While my interest in the sport itself may have declined over the years, I’ve always loved cricket analogy.
It is a sport that lends itself well to situations you’ll encounter as Account Management over the course of a normal work day in advertising.
The most used being playing on the backfoot or the frontfoot.
You can either anticipate the discussion, step out and bat the point of view.
Or react to each point as and when it is put forth.
Either let it pass, play a ground stroke or hit it for a six.
Much like cricket, it depends on the bowler, your form on that particular day, and/or instructions from the captain.
There is a coach, in Planning, who will give you a direction.
After ‘extensive analysis and understanding player behaviour’.
Very often, you’ll find yourself defending in a conversation with creative.
Which is not a bad thing, really.
Good defence requires hardwork, technique and patience. And a good abdomen guard.
Then the client does very often throw a googly.
Wanting a fresh creative rolled out in 3 days. Or changing the brief with one comment on the creative.
You’ll be beaten unless your reflexes are sharp.
Expecting an artwork by end of day is generally a bouncer. No, make that a stock delivery – short of good length.
Easy to hit, expected four out of six balls in an over – especially with Indian bowlers.
You’ll always buy time by telling them you’ll have to wait till stumps, or as they call it in advertising – EOD.
You will do well to read the wrong ones from the studio team.
Once read, you can play a good drive and hit a boundary.
An abused analogy, but you’ll always have the pleasure of some great leg glances in advertising.
And the good slip fielder will catch even the tough balls.
There are projects where you will hit a century, delivering on all expectations.
And projects where you will be a forward short leg fielder, who is expected to keep a keen eye on the ball to catch it.
But does it more to evade the shots directed at him every second ball.
But the one thing you definitely learn in advertising is ball-talks.
Hence, on a bad day, if you can’t bowl them with your brilliance, you can always stump them with your bull-shit.
He walked up to the table and sat, visibly uncomfortable.
Obviously so. It had been close to eight months.
He still remembered every minute detail of the day he had chosen to walk away.
Walk away from the only one who had given him unquestioned love.
He did not, could not explain why he had done it.
He knew he was guilty. And he was finding it impossible to forgive himself.
It was his attraction, his initiation, his decision.
And he had no right to leave her without a reason.
“She was more than love. She had become an addiction”, he tried to convince himself.
And he had always been warned against crossing the line.
But wasn’t that what he was about to do, again.
It’d be the last time, he promised himself.
After all, he owed her an apology. An honest apology. Face to face.
He didn’t know how she would react. But he didn’t care today.
He was being selfish, again.
He knew where he would find her, and started walking at a brisk pace.
The chill in the air rushing to the fore memories of the past days.
Restless, he reached there. And saw her sitting at her favorite corner.
Her first sight, and he was overcome by a reassuring sense of warmth.
That’s what she was. Reassurance.
If thoughts could melt you into nothingness, he would be in a liquid state already.
How could he have been so, so daft?
And almost immediately the question sprinted across his mind – “Will she take me back?”.
He knew he had wronged her immensely.
“But everyone makes mistakes, right?”
Overpowering was the desire to have her back in his life.
“Guilt is lifelong, isn’t it”
As he sat there, next to her and looked her in the eyes, he saw the same affection. Unflinching in acceptance.
Reminding him of all the days she had stood by him. The good times and the bad.
Calmed him down when he was angry. Cheered him up when he was sad.
Nothing had changed, or had it?
He wanted to know. Wanted to know if she had given up on him.
Or still wanted him as badly as he wanted her.
It was eating him.
So he got up and gently held her in his hands. She didn’t react.
He closed his eyes for a moment. And opened. She was still there.
So he brought her even closer to him.
And in that moment, oblivious to the world, touched her with his lips.
And discovered his love for the 60 ml, again.
Do you know a word way stronger than love and hate?
I know one.
It overpowers money and power.
It remains indifferent to anger.
Unflappable under pressure.
It drives the emotional and the practical.
Blind in its purest form, it thrives on belief.
Do not ever take it for granted.
It shields your dreams.
Very fragile, it is very tough to gain.
It is, however, very easily lost.
Probably the only power that can challenge time.
It will stand when the sky is falling.
It is the force that runs the world.
Tumhaare vaaste toofan seh lein, muskurao tum.
You’ll not know otherwise.
Fall for what you believe in. What you stand for.
Stand there. Even when your feet are trembling.
Wanting to run. Escape from that moment.
Stay. Experience it.
So hard, it hurts.
Teaches you to get up again.
But fall with your beliefs secure in your hands.
Bear the anguish.
Your head held high.
So you never fall in your own eyes.
For no antiseptic can cure that.
Are you a frustrated nine to __________ worker who’s always felt the need for further education? Who deserved more? Who clearly knows much more than the new bloke who just joined in, yet earns thrice what you do? Or a soon to be graduate? An MBA is your answer because:
- Firstly, and most obviously, the salary jump. Nowhere else will you get a salary jump disproportionate to its true value. I mean if two years of chilling, a few projects with ‘real companies’, some supposedly enriching summer internship, and a lot of late nights can hike your current salary by 4 times, its well worth it. To borrow a thought, If you are going to get fucked at work anyway, might as well get paid bloody well for it!
- It will get you an entry in Investment Banking, or Capital Advisory. So what if you understand nothing about it. No one who joined it really did, or had much interest for it. It just happened to be the place where the money was.
- The extra salary will come in handy for a hell of a lot of things. Especially the number of loans you’ll pick up immediately after college, or have already picked up.
- Not only that, it will help you fund the increase in alcohol consumption cost to cope with the non-sense you’ll still have to bear at work.
- It will give you two more years to chill, be yourself, do your things, get drunk, get fuckin smashed, not worry about performance appraisals or client briefings.
- Of your batchmates who did it!
- The barely average ones, who you thought you would be able to outpace on any reasonable day with your eyes closed, managed to do an MBA while you DID have your eyes closed. And now give gyaan on how a Masters is a must!
- The intelligent ones, who did it, and are now in a position of envy, simply because they took a plunge that you still haven’t taken.
- All the frustrating, incompetent managers you have had, who knew zilch, as well as that new bloke who joined in last month, knew squat, yet earned in 7 digits had one thing in common – They were MBAs.
- You’re an IIT’ian (IIM ABC aapke liye hi banaa tha). Or an engineer whose had enough of engineering (Koi na koi A-list B-School le lega boss), or a CA who believes that just accountancy is not enough, you need managerial skills (Haha)
- It will shut your family up. Most of them really don’t care. They are just looking for a conversation starter – What are you doing nowadays… What are your future plans… Are you not going to study further? Yet once known you have no MBA plans, it’ll be brought up everytime, and you shall be counseled on the importance of Post Graduation. MBA, and how everybody is doing it.
- Or probably you’re being pressurized for marriage and want to offset it by a couple of years.
- Both of which make you want to get away from home, and you really can’t have a better excuse than wanting to do further studies. Better still, you can do a foreign Masters and get ‘international exposure’.
- It is probably the last chance you’ll have to interact on a regular basis with people you share common interests with, and not common competitive goals.
- It is also most likely to be the last place you’ll have a pool of single women/men. And a lot of time to ‘get to know them better’.
- And in case, you don’t get lucky on campus, you can make use of Instant recognition: From ‘that lukha’, you suddenly become the dude who’s in IIM B, and that’s how you’ll be referred to behind your back, called, leg pulled about, and pointed out by random strangers from across a crowded room. And hey, it’s bloody cool, and don’t deny – you love it!
- Consequently, it will add depth to your opinions. What was earlier utter non-sense will suddenly be considered valuable insight, and unwanted suggestions will become considerable inputs.
- How to make PPT presentations in 10 minutes is not something anyone will teach you at work.
- Nor will you learn how to present them as a product of great thought and weeks of effort anywhere else.
- It shall equip you with skill sets that make deadlines irrelevant, since they’d have passed probably long before you even get to work on that damned project. It will add exceptional value to your ability to do nothing, and yet look busy at it.
- 3 months of CAT/GMAT studies really is a positively better option in front of unending months of office related embarrassment.
- Lastly, you have been positively inspired by Five Point Someone, or Anything for you Ma’m or seen 3 Idiots, and its too late to get into Engineering, but you want to work hard to be ‘kaabil, and not kaamyaab’.
[Issued in public interest. This article is written by a Non MBA who currently shows no signs of crossing the bridge, for he is unable to find a reason convincing enough to do so.]
I was reasonably unemployed in office today, so saw two videos that I had been wanting to. Both, mind-blowing in their own way.
The first one was ‘Chale Chalo‘: The making of Lagaan. Probably the most telling documentary I’ve seen. The toil of the soil. The entire gamut of emotions a human can experience – the will to rough it out, lose, win, the pain, the ecstasy, despair, helplessness, and delight. The lunacy of film-making. The idealism, and the heartbreak. The dreams and the nightmares. It was an experience that somewhere makes you realise that there can be no substitute for pure, unadulterated ground hardwork. I urge you to see this documentary. It’ll definitely leave an imprint. Something for you to chew on.
The second was shared by Bhavin: Harsha Bhogle at IIM (A) . Bits and pieces of this video are available on facebook, but this is the entire monologue. He touches some very pertinent points about practical approaches to your profession, and how one can observe and learn. The reference points are relatable, the humour-characteristic. There is much to learn from it.
If you have the time, I urge you to watch both these videos. They’ll give you food for thought.
Serious note to self,
Control over my language I’m losing.
This is to constantly remind myself,
I need to stop abusing!