Thursday, August 19, 2010

Of Ego & Expectations

25 years back, it was a happy joint family. All the family members with their children shared a bond of love, care, happiness and togetherness all the time. They played, eat and slept together. Had fun during summer holidays and were in touch with each other through regular post cards or letter writing. It was a picture perfect setting like any old Hindi family movie.

Now 25 years later all those family members are living separately. Their children have grown, some are college going and some are working and married. Their relationship and bondage with each other have become weak, meeting together is rare and get-togethers reduced to occasional family functions. Children are indifferent to their counterparts and communication is reduced to just ask welfare or say hello & bye!  The feelings of selfishness, bitterness and jeliousy have a cascading effect on the youngsters too. Sometimes, the grudges between heads of two families get reflected on to their children who also do not see eye to eye. The whole gambit of ‘Picture Perfect family’ has disappeared in the din of fast paced life. No one has time and patience. Out of blue, a close knit family breaks up.

It is said that as the person grows, wisdom sets in but how come such happy relationship of oneness of yesteryears is forgotten and relations become sore. Even though there were no major issues of differences, no fight has taken place amongst any family members but still the strain of ‘All is not well’ loom large on their faces. An expectation rides over rational thinking- ‘Why me alone, why not they?’, ‘Why should I initiate, why not they?’, ‘If you call me I shall reciprocate’, ‘If you come to my house I shall come to yours’, ‘If your children talk to my children, they will talk to yours!’ Each one of us expects the other one to take the lead, initiate and talk. The roots of ‘give & take’ feelings have gone deep in to our heart and mind.

The dynamics of human relations are changing. There used to be a term ‘Thick friends’ earlier, now ask someone who their thick friend is? Do not be surprised if after a long pause and thought you may be told there is none! And this is not just confined to family relationship but covers all other relationships like friendship, lover’s relationship, employee- employer relationship, etc. The feeling of ‘why me why not he/she’ makes all the difference. The changing life style, stress and strains of daily life and distance of living apart can be some of the factors but the major factor contributing to such a change can be attributed to our own making.

Ego and expectations have eclipsed our mind. In order to build a healthy and fruitful relationship it is paramount to understand that in the larger interest of relationship individual’s ego and expectations are to be kept set aside. The problem is not with our expectations but with our insistence that things must and should work out the way we expect them to. It is imperative that in any relationship there has to be some kind of invisible sacrifice, a readiness to forego and forgive attitude, forgetting smaller inconveniences in order to make a space for others to stay in your heart. All said and done, when ever you feel hurt, insulted and ignored, think with open mind, analyze and ask yourselves ‘what wrong have I/We  done’? Probably this may answer some of our own problems.

Friday, August 13, 2010

How safe & faster is e-MO?

The Indian department of Post has replaced the old Money Order form (M.O.) with a new easy to fill eMO form MO-8E (I). As the name suggests, this has been introduced for faster remittance of money keeping in tune with the technology. This new form has certain flaws.
1-     There is no writing space for any kind of personal message to the payee. Instead, there are 21 message codes (just like the one used in Greetings telegram) to be used which may not necessarily cover the purpose for which the eMO is being sent by the sender.
2-     There is no ‘Acknowledgement portion’ which used to be sent back to the sender as a proof of having delivered the money to the payee. Thus, the remitter will have no proof in hand in case of a dispute to prove at a later date that the payee has actually received the money.
3-     As per the existing system, the MO can be tracked only through the postal department website
How can a layman or villager track the eMO on computer is a question, the department has to answer. Other wise he has to travel repeatedly all the way to the post office to know the status.

In this context I would like to share my experience. On 14th May I sent an eMO from Bangalore to a publisher at Faridabad (Haryana) towards cost of a book. In between, the publisher informed me of the non receipt of MO several times whenever I sent reminder. However the website tracking system showed that the MO has travelled through various Post offices like Central Server to Escortnagar Faridabad, to Amarnagar Faridabad to Nhpc colony, Faridabad during the period 15/5 to 26/5. Finally, it showed the date of payment as 26/5. But the publisher kept on repeating the same reason for not sending the book to me.

After waiting for full 2 months, finally I decided to lodge a complaint with the Postal department asking them either to produce me the publisher’s acknowledgement of having received the money or else refund me the MO amount. The department promptly sent me a reply based on the same tracking record stating that ‘The MO was paid to the payee on 25/5’ and that my complaint is settled’. I simply forwarded the reply to the publisher with a note asking them to send the book now or else keep and treat the amount as my donation to them. Believe me; I received the book by courier in a record time of just two days thereafter. Incidentally, the book I ordered was all about ‘creating record’!

The larger question is, if this is a faster mode of remittance, how many days can be reckoned as fast. In the instant case, the eMO sent on 14/5 has reached its destination on 26/5 after full 13 days. More over how many people have time and patience to pursue such matters relentlessly and what if the intention of payee turns out to be doubtful?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Nostalgic Bollywood

It has become a trend in Bollywood to keep the titles of movies in English now a day. Even the songs will have some English lines here and there. But do you know, as far back as 1960, Sunil Dutt starrer  Hindi film ‘Ek phool char kante’ had a full fledged English song by Iqbal Singh-‘Beautiful Baby Broadway’ .

Subsequently, music director Shankar Jaikishan made singer Vivin Lobo (voice similar to Mahendra kapoor) to sing an English-German song ‘ Ich Liebe dich, I love you’  for Raj Kapoor’s  film ‘Sangam’ in 1964.

Many of the films made by students from Film Institute, Pune were tagged as ‘Art Movie’ or ‘Experimental Movie’ during 70s.But long before this; Sunil Dutt had made an out & out experimental film in 60s called ‘Yadein’ featuring himself all alone. Yes, no other artists or extras featured in the film. Only the voices of Nargis dutt and children were used to depict conversation. Unfortunately, no mention of this film is made by any film writer, critic or artist while discussing trend setting movies. B.R.Chopra was another director who made a full fledged court room drama in a song less movie some time in 60s called ‘Kanoon’. The film had only a ballet dance sequence.

If you think animation is new to Bollywood and is still in its primitive stage as compared to Hollywood, here is some good news. In 1957 came a children film called ‘Aab Dilli door nahi ‘ which had a  song ‘Chun Chun karti Aayi chidia’ sung by Mohammad Rafi and  in this song, animal characters were show in animation!

Never herd of these films or songs? Well, check out at YouTube and search for these songs/videos to enjoy the once upon a time songs!