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Crossroads

Sunday, August 09, 2009 , 48 Comments

It was raining since last evening, rains accompanied by recurrent thunderstorm and huge lightening. There was this house in the middle of the street, a house on the crossroads. Alone she was sitting in one of the darkest corner of the house with her eyes fixed to the windows. The large crystal glass windows from where she could see the thick dense rain. It was one of her favorite spots in the house from where she used to sit and watch the splash for hours. Today also, she sat there with her eyes fixed on the windows but her vision too cluttered to see the water outside.

The sound of thunder did not bother her, for she had too many noises going in her head. She struggled for hours, days to keep them away but they refused to leave her alone. The sound of thunder did not scare her, for could not decide which was louder, which was more dreadful.

With her hands folded in prayer and her eyes looking furtively at the window, at the door, she has been waiting there for what seemed like decades now. She was not dead but she was helpless, hopeless.

She gently wiped her teary face and walked to the fire mantle. She lit the fireplace with some wood, some papers and some fabrics. Yes, the pink dress in which she looked stunning will no longer touch her. She gave it away to fire along with the red wedding sari she bought for herself. There were some dried manuscript, pictures, poetries and letters sent to the fire as her homage, as her attempt to come abreast with the blazing truth.

It was hard to see them burning but she did not want to stop it. She did not want to try preserving it anymore. It is not so easy to weave dreams and then see them falling apart; it is difficult to sustain the injury stab after stab. She accepted that the fate of the waves does not change when they hit against the rocks. “If fire is my destination, I shall fuel it” and she started tearing her diary in which she displayed the beauty of love, life and dreams in form of poetry, in forms of intangible words. The diary, which was once her best friend, her surrogate mother and guide, to whom she used to share all her inherent feelings, has now started bothering her.

She was tearing all the pages where she had poured all joys. Joy of a phone beep a lingering voice, a much-awaited meeting, her first touch and that everlasting peck. Joy of stolen kisses and silent cuddles, joy of affable admirations in his eyes, the half asleep morning hours; joy which were beyond words or expression. With one hand, she was wiping her unbroken tears and with other flipping, the pages of joys that now dig her broken soul even more.

He never promised to marry her but he always said he wanted to. He wanted to dream with her and she started weaving it with him. In his eyes, she saw the face of their unborn child. In his arms, she felt peace, security and his presence she felt that she is alive. She wanted to have a home with him, and he promised her, a home made of love. There she was madly in love with a name, an expression, a face that lit her world. She was on top of the world with his love.

The glaring fire was coming to a halt. The flame took away everything she endeared and returned back only ashes. Ashes of her dreams, their collective dreams. Ashes do not have roots to lean on but fly wherever the strong, coarse winds take them.


She has though seen her dreams gradually dusting away but still could not bring a heart to accept it. She did not want her emotions to weaken her spirits; if at all, memories have left any spirit. She rose with great force and ran back to her room. She fell flat on her bed and tried to bury her tears, her sobs in the already soaked pillow. She did not remember since how long she lay there, how long she laid crying, how long until she felt unconscious. The night was long, dark and unbearable. It struggled with darkness as little David with Goliath. She thought this night will pass soon and she would wake up to bright morning. She hoped against the hope that dawn will bring sunshine and will bring him back when she wakes up.
She lay for hours and woke to another morning with rain, thunderstorm and dark clouds.

[Crossroad is my 1st attempt at writing soft fiction. I hope to have done a fair job at it]
[Also, this is a fiction and I appreciate if you treat it just as one. Art imitates life but life should not imitate this art]

48 Visitor's Comments:

Hi Folks,

You heard me...now its time for Bouquets and Brickbats!

“Change-o’-nomics”

Monday, August 03, 2009 , 45 Comments

Economics always freaked me. Freakonomics tweaks me even more. That is well not the end to my freaking, shrieking, shrilling list. There is more and one of it could be termed as “changeonomics”. Ekta Khetan

The above statement will soon find its place in list of famous quotes from an upcoming freakonomist of all times - Yours truly. From years, world has truly conspired me towards the subject economics and acknowledging the GDC [Globally designed Conspiracy]; I shall explain the proposed theory of “Change-o-nomics”.

Before I begin, let us assume that- we all have studied economics sometime and we are patient readers who appreciate humor over grammar. So taking ceteris paribus as the baseline, let us take a random sample of 10 people and ask- Bhai Sahib Kya aapke paas Rs 100 ka ‘change’ hai?
99% of the responses so generated would be-

# 9.555 out of ten responses says “no” [Closed economy]
# 2 out of 10 will too claim to have Rs 100 only [Perfect Competition]
# 1 of 10 retorts to have only Rs 60 or any lesser amount [inelastic demand]
# Another 10% confesses that they have just given it away or deposited in bank. [Institutionalized Monopoly or economy of scales or restrictive practices ]
# 25% of respondents guides you to another shop, store or even Taxi Walla [Globalization]
# Eight out of those 10 redirected sellers will apply-
“IF (You make an impulsive purchase, Yes_change available, No_change not available)”. [Also known as Opportunity cost over and above economic cost]

Well that establishes correlation of change-o-no-mics with market efficiency. How? Consider this-
1. No one can be made better off without making someone else worse off: Almost true
2. More output cannot be obtained without increasing the amount of input [refer point no 6 above]
3. Production proceeds at lowest possible unit cost [Try to get the change for Rs 500, Rs 100 and Rs 50 and you will understand]

So what is "Changeonomics"? In economic terms, it is a social choice theory, which works on the “compensation principal” of matching the dynamics of “what is in my pocket” and “what is in my mind. Therefore, whether it is recession, or inflation, the flow of ‘change currency’ as in medium of exchange is a mutually exclusive event. This type of heterodox economics aims to explain how economies of asking “change money” work and how its agent interacts.
In simple words, it is the tough commerce of getting "small change" from public. Like two Rs 50 for a hundred ruppee currency.
The phrase “Mister, Do you have change for X rupee” has become a dreaded economic condition for money market and theorem’s of liquidity. By asking this question, one stimulates a market condition driven by equal demand and supply but low intend to purchase called- “Change-no-mics” [read it as change?-no-oh me?-eeks! It is self-explanatory]
Change-o-no-micsEconomics is freaky at times. And “change-o-no-mics” is even freakier. I am a daily victim, everyday I play the recipient role with new scripts. I travel to office by taxi and consider myself lucky when these taxis walla’s accepts the possibilities of providing me “change” for the amount, however rare occasions they are. I am luckier if I find a “messiah” having either the changes or the equivalent amount to bail me out of that situation.

Conceding the immense contribution of changenomics in my life, I shall dedicate last week as the “changeonomics week”. Having proved that “changenomics” has little to do with Economics and more with human dynamics, we shall be moving our right side of brain keeping the left side still engaged, marveling the theory above.

500-56-12
So last week, one funny incidence incurred over other. I had an appointment at VLCC for hair fall treatment and the moment I stepped outside my building, it started raining. Irony is that I cannot let my hair wet, as it would affect the kera procedure to the extent of getting electric shock. I initially planned to take a bus as the clinic was nearby and hiring a taxi would be waste. Accordingly, I had Rs 500 and Rs 20 plus some coins in my pocket. The rain got dense and for next 15 minutes, I stood hopelessly with my matching blue umbrella at main gate. The bus became a no-no option, so I settled on taxi and that was the second mistake I did. I took the cab a colleague came in, continuing the same meter, letting her to pay her share later. The moment I realized that cabbie does not have change for Rs 500 and I Rs 50 as change, I asked the cabbie to get a change from nearest petrol pump. He first refused, blabbered and after some resistance, parked in middle of road and walked to the pump. “Madam change nahi mila”.

We stopped at the venue in middle of market place, IDBI bank and eateries. I spent solid 10 minutes while experiencing all those six responses above. We finally received mercies at 4th floor of the institute where a faculty decided to help me with Rs 56 to pay the fare and release the cab. Phew! If you think the matter settled then read further. I did not remember the vehicle no and accompanied the office boy back to ground floor. Paid and settled? No. Being the other smartest fellow on earth [first one is me off course], the peon boy went around, packed all the food orders and then came back to state that he could not generate a change for Rs 500. Gosh! He did all this while I waited for another ten minutes on pavement. Moreover, this all for a net amount of Rs 12, which I anyways was carrying in my pocket. That also explains 500-56-12.

Incident no2- One morning, I landed at office gate holding the Omnipresent Rs 100. Once again, the cabbie ditched me. The local chai-pan wala ditched too and office motley is as good for nothing as often. This time my messiah was the main gate security guard. In incidence no 3, my rescuer was a female colleague who, apparently got very amused with my “accounts management, bad debt recovery and cash flow theories”.

Incidences like this keeps on happening. Everyday either I do not have the exact fare amount or the taxi/ auto rickshaw person does not have. It goes from 50 paisa to 50 rupee and I end up being the sacrificing party. Well every experience teaches you something. I for that matter learnt to- always carry over n above the adequate change assuming the cabbies will be cabbies. Secondly, be very stringent to impart with your “changes”.

Now did I forget to say that the theory of “change-o-no-mics” works both ways- Buyer’s end and seller’s too? Eeeeks stop freaking, stop freaking! A "small change" is always welcome!

45 Visitor's Comments:

Hi Folks,

You heard me...now its time for Bouquets and Brickbats!

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