Sunday, March 27, 2011

Those who sit on the fence......

To sit on the fence :
To remain neutral on a certain topic, to not have a stance or opinion. 
Check source here

This practice is followed by a large majority of people. In words and actions, by bookies, punters, politicians, voters, players, followers and so on. All prefer to wait and watch and then form or change their opinion. And why not, always better to know what's likely to be there ahead, if and when you do decide to go ahead.

The best example of this are live - in relationships. Not sure you can stay together, try out for sometime, stay as a married couple. If it works out, great else walk out. No commitment! I wonder if it is as easy as that. Not so much a custom in India, but more in western countries i believe. Here, the idea is tried out in a more subtle manner(if at all). But the practice spending (wasting?) time together to try and understand each other exists - doesn't matter 6 months after marriage the person / family we married is completely different from what we perceived it to be. So in that sense, sitting on the fence with a live in relationship makes sense. Lesser risk of things going wrong later.

They may go wrong earlier though....

To my mind this idea is stupid. They say for a successful marriage you need trust. I would also say commitment.And that is developed by staying in the same house and seeing what time the other person brushes his teeth???? If you have spent enough time with someone to be willing to stay with her / him, you have spent enough time to know the person. I would say its just a tactic used by people scared of commitment but wanting to enjoy the good part of marriage - sharing time, splitting bills and yes the sex. (Don't believe Salaam Namaste's 'we had it by mistake and then carried on' story). Convenient. Problem is, in the clutter of these many things, also come in clash of egos, variance in habits and the trivial-est of reasons would lead to a split. Happens more often than not, because you are sitting on the fence, you there is the easier way out if you don't like the fact that the guy is a soccer fan or farts too much!

I think it also has to do with people not wanting to be held responsible for their lives decisions in case things do not work out......

Customers are 'fence sitters'. My first boss, i forgot his name (man, i am getting old!), was in sales for 20 years. One of the early advices he gave me was to learn how to identify the 'fence sitter' customers because they waste the most time. We did cold calls, just walk in to an office and make our pitch. He would always say focus on those who are willing to know more and more about the company, about the product in the first meeting itself. That guy is forming an opinion and quick. The quicker you respond, the higher chances of him getting converted.The fence sitter would ask for a quote, seek obvious details, try to humour you, not commit on when to expect reply, make up follow up endlessly and waste your time. He may also be converted, so you don't ignore him - but as they say, he reduces your productivity.

Sitting on the fence can be good to. In certain way, all good classical batsmen, who see the ball till the last minute and then decide to hit accordingly are fence sitters. No premeditated shots, just a bit of instinct honed by hours of practice.

The funny thing is - Some people say I am a fence sitter(well, its a good thing to do na, when not so close friends ask advice?), some say i have strong opinions, almost a bias(well, Japanese Korean cars are too light!!!). I just have opinions which i express strongly or otherwise as and when required.(this blog has a label called “opinions”!).

This post by itself has no meaning.The above is part of a "blog-off" .My friend and I decided to write blogs on the word "Sit" (yeah, sorry we couldn't get a better word). It could be title, theme or story - anything that suggested itself when you heard the word. The above is mine, I'll sit on the fence and wait for your opinions before making up my mind on whether I'll post that link or not!

Monday, March 14, 2011

She went on a trip with me….

Well, a drive at least…..longer than the long drives to Belapur we do weekly….. Drove upto the Aamby Valley near Lonavla.




Dunno why the photographer thought this is a good snap taking place….


On the way to Lonavla….


Almost at Lonavla….

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Some views from the window… next time I'll take a better photographer…promise!!

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Fairly good road. Uphill, curvy, fun. 90 HP used to hilt! The photographer could not capture the real curves or slopes – the camera was busy being kept in one corner!


The photographer!

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Some views from up there…… we did not really hang around for the sunset, though it is beautiful at this place. Was really irritated looking at all the broken beer bottles,plastic cups, packets strewn around. This may not be a hep tourist spot, but no civic sense at all?



Beauty and Beast??? She did real well off road!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hold this thought…….

Kabhi kisi ko mukammal jahan nahin milta
Kahin zameen to kahin aasman nahin milta
- Nida Fazli

(The preaching continues…..)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Another sunset....

And probably the last one i'll see over Walwhan lake, Lonavla. This from the the Tata Power guest house. When you go there you understand how it must be feeling to be a royal. Only problem : the King is always around and you have to behave!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Learnings from sports....

(Warning : by sports, i mean Test Cricket, ODI cricket, T20 cricket and any other form of cricket in that order followed by Tennis, Football, F1 depending upon the season)

Tennis is a game that lets you have a chance of winning even when you are down and out. We have seen number of instances of Andre Agassi coming back from the brink - match point after being 2 sets down already and then breaking it, and winning the match. There was one such match with Todd Martin. Takes talent, skill, fitness and intent. Positive intent.

Such a thing is unlikely to happen in football or hockey, say if a team is leading 5 - 0 at halftime, they can very well defend all the remaining time and win the game. The other side may try and play as well as they can, they are unlikely to make a comeback from that situation. May happen, but its a long shot.

Cricket, and let me say i am biased here, offers you a chance to redeem yourself. And the first thing you need for that is positive intent - talent, skill, fitness come later. The very design of Test cricket (2 innings per team) allows that. So does limited overs cricket. You dont bat well, but can come back and win with your bowling performance eg. 1983 World Cup final where India defended 183 against a rampaging West Indian batting line up. Or you dont bowl well but more than make up with your batting eg. the match where South Africa chased down a 430 odd runs against the mighty Australians. Ok, there are influencers like the pitch, weather, dew and so on. But whats most important is what you are thinking at the midway stage.

Last sunday, England came out all guns blazing against India needing 339 to win the game, it was a tied match. But you got appreciate the English teams intent - they could have lost the match even before they come out to bat. But the English batted well, led by captain Strauss to make a match of it. Ofcourse, they were helped by a flat pitch, poor fielding and not so wise bowling.

Today, minnows Ireland actually chased down the English total of 327 to win the match. At one stage they were 111-5 when Kevin O'Brien and Alex Cusack came together. They put 162 runs before Mooney put the finishing touches to calmly win the game. What were they thinking of their chances in the interval or 111-5 ? In O'Briens words : ' we could have just pottered around and finished at 220 in 50 overs, but that would not have looked good on TV. So i just chanced my arm, played some positive cricket and went on to win' simple. This man scored the fastest 100 of world cup history! 50 balls flat, eclipsing Matther Haydens record. Ofcourse they were helped by poor bowling, poor fielding, a flat pitch and other factors - but hey, fortune favours the brave!!!!

Sport, in general, gives us valuable lessons that can be applied to life too. If you are down and out at one stage, doesnt mean you are out of the game. Had O'Brien or Strauss, not tried, they would have definitely not won the points they got. Had they believed they will not be able to score the runs required to win, they would have lost badly.

But that intent itself isnt enough. Application, focus equally important. O'Brien today played classic cricketing shots. So did Strauss on sunday. Kevin Peterson, the man expected to perform in such situations, got out playing cheeky 'cute' shots!

This doesnt mean you will always get what you want, cos you have to contend with forces working against you - pressure, opponent, the elements and so on. This tells us the importance of de -linking effort from results - acceptance of the result after putting in your best.

So my dear friends, as we learnt from these cricketing lessons, in any situation, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by being positive, focussed at the task at hand, using the best possible means and accepting the result.

Which is more or less same as the most famous take out from the Bhagwad Gita : KARMANYE VAADHIKA RASHTEY MAA FALESHU KADACHAN

PS : Today i told a friend i'll become a preacher. But I did not promise to preach only what i practise. :)

Disclaimer : These preachings are insomnia and CWC excitement induced. To be taken seriously at your own risk.