New element discovered

Research has led to the discovery of the heaviest element yet known to science. The new element, Governmentium (Gv), has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons, and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.

These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called peons. Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert; however, it can be detected because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact. A minute amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that would normally take less than a second to take from four days to four years to complete.

Governmentium has a normal half-life of 2- 6 years; it does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places. In fact, Governmentium’s mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes. This characteristic of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration. This hypothetical quantity is referred to as critical morass.

When catalyzed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium, an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium since it has half as many peons but twice as many morons.

You might also like my old post on this subject


good guy or effective guy

i am wondering what is more important…
being a nice human or being an effective one?

I have talked for weeks politely over call centers of ICICI Bank,
Makemytrip, dell, Citibank and even my office… nothing gets done .. but the moment i
lose my temper my problem is resolved in a jiffy. So essentially in the past 7 days I have lost my temper 7 times.

I feel guilty everytime i raise my voice or talk rudely to anybody, but if that is the only way if I can get my work done, I wonder if that is what I should do


joote de do paise de do

In North India, there is a game where the cousins of the bride would steal the shoes of shoes of the groom. In this cat and mouse game, the family of the groom would be engaged in putting up decoys and preventing the bridesmaid to steal the shoes. If the shoes are stolen (which invariably happens), then the groom has to pay and he is also allowed to punish (in a funny way) his shoe-keepers.

Here is a famous song starring Salman Khan and Madhuri Dixit which depicts how much fun both sides have in this game.

Recently my very good friend got married and her cousins were finding a tough time in being able to get hold of the shoes. But this did not stop them, they went ahead and stole the car tyres of the grooms vehicles.

I love when people do things differently and think creatively. When was the last time did you see somebody following the traditions differently?


concept of tomorrow

I find tomorrow as the most confusing of the terms than man uses in everyday life. (and yes this comes from a man who understands rocket science)

Let me give you an example.
1) For most people, tomorrow is like horizon. You feel its not too far away, but the moment you approach it, it goes even further.
2) Then when you are working across time zones, tomorrow can be real confusing. You never know whether its your tomorrow or his tomorrow. So if my US counterpart says in an early morning meeting that I need to do by tomorrow morning, that means I need to finish the task in 24 hours. Right, but more often than not it means I need to finish the task by the evening (his morning)
3) Even for those living in the same time zone tomorrow morning could be a bit confusing. This is specially when we are working late. For me the day rolls over only after I have caught some sleep. So if I am up late night and somebody else commits that he will finish the task by tomorrow morning, then in the joy I often forget that the other person is demanding for 30 hours and not 6 hours.

What is your definition of tomorrow?


The Cashier

If there is a cashier amongst the reader, please skip the post for you might find it demeaning.

In an Indian shop, the cashier is one of the most important person. It is so important that usually the owner/family member dedicates himself full time for the duty. However during my visit to South Korea and Singapore, I realized that out there the cashier is a minimum wage job. Only people in their late teens with no prior experience work as a cashier.

Ever wondered why?

To search the answer to this question, I started looking at the activities performed by a cashier.
1) In spite of the fact that there is always a never ending flow of people approaching you, You need to smile all the time. You cannot rest for even a second.
2) Your actions are quite robotic. You need to check the price tag of each and every article, feed it into a computer, ask the customer for change, swipe their card, pack their merchandise etc. How you treat the first customer is almost the same as you would treat the next one and there is hardly any incremental knowledge addition.
3) Whats worse is that you need to be as fast as possible. People are OK with spending an hour in a shop (trying new dresses, going through the shop’s selection, or simply window shopping) but they won’t tolerate spending even one extra second at the cashier’s queue.
4) To make matter worse, you need to be good in maths. Your each mistake would cost the shop money.

There is nothing glamorous about it. To sum up, it is an important job, but does not add any value to the business. Then why is it that it is held so important in India?

I thought maybe my judgment is clouded by the fact that in India shops are smaller in size. Hence I went to small bakeries, restaurants and bars. I found that the owner is usually in the kitchen, or working as a head waiter/bartender. In a small shop (with >3 employees) the owner is the person who greets you at the shop’s doorsteps and guides you to the correct section of the shop. Whats worse is that in some shops multiple employees have access to the same cash register. (something that is unthinkable in India)

The only reasons that I could come up with are:
1) Historical reasons: a few generations ago, the shop keeper was the only person who could read and write. Doing basic maths of calculating the price, subtracting the discounts, keeping record of credit and tendering the change were so much error prone and important that only the the merchant himself or his trusted aide the Muneen could be trusted with the job.
Today, billing machines and price tags have reduced the complexity, but still Indians are slow to change.

2) Indifference towards customers: In other countries, to run a successful enterprise, you need to understand them well and make extra efforts towards serving them better. That is why the owner takes the responsibility of managing the customer interaction. That is why they are often the first person who comes ahead and greets you, they are the production incharge (kitchen) or supervises the service.
In India the competition is still not that much cut throat or maybe the owner prefers to get a cozy desk job to ensuring that his customers get the best.

3) I think it is because of lack of honesty amongst Indians: It is well known that most shops in India evade VAT/Sales tax. They misreport the sales, inventory and costs and a lot of bribes and speed money needs to be paid. Now do to lack of any accounting/reports/paper trail you cannot trust anybody else to handle the job.
While in developed nations, every customer gets the correct bill/receipt of the sale and most payments is made via credit card and not in cash. Hence its OK for them to allow just about anybody to handle the job of the cashier.

What do you think is the reason?