Archive | October, 2006

Bangalore to Bengaluru – What’s in a name?

30 Oct

There’s debate upon debate about the name change of Bangalore to Bengaluru. I have seen people passionately talking about “Brand Bangalore” ad-nauseum.

In fact it was suggested to me (by Kishor Kariappa) that I change the name of this blog to BengaluruBlues. I have referred the suggestion to the “cultural committee” and they have come back with the suggestion that I keep the name. So I will. Sorry Kishor.

Now some people feel that the name change from Bangalore to Bengaluru will dilute its brand. So do you think Cisco, IBM, Microsoft etc will move out of Bangalore just because the name changed? I dont think so. The place is the same, the people are the same, the infrastructure is the same, pilots will not lose their way, busses and trains will still come. Life goes on.

Bombay did not stop being the financial capital of India just because it changed its name to Mumbai.

Just let it go guys… the name will be Bengaluru. If you still want to call it Bangalore then call it that. No one will object. I like Bangalore and Bengaluru…

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Brat Pack – 2

27 Oct

Just seems to me that these “rich and famous” brats are springing up everywhere. Earlier this week it was “Little Bidappa” this week it is “Little Kumara” (our dear CM’s son).

 Of course the poor kid was looking for a snack at 3:00+ AM  and not only was he refused, he was beaten up. Thats his story.

There are 3 sides to every story. Version 1, Version 2 and finally, the truth.

Anyway, the papers are ranting today about this incident. I am sure a call from the CM’s office will shut them up and this whole thing will be an aberration and will be swept under the rug. After all the kid is a future leader. Oh, by the way the kid was driving a Porsche. Not bad for a “Mannina Mommaga”.

Good thing is “Little Bidappa’s” case has got lost in the frenzy.

One question, if you are hungry at 3:00 AM in the morning, shouldn’t you be going home? What are you doing out on the street?

Another question, doesn’t anyone in these families worry about their teenage kids being out at these odd hours?

Just Wondering…

Yours Truly – A Lousy Traveler

25 Oct

“Have you been there?” Nikhil pipes up… we are watching a show on National Geographic featuring the Grand Canyon. It takes me back in time; sure I’d been there… the USA I mean. I first went there in 1986, lived there till 1992. After we moved back to India (after a Singapore sojourn until 1995), I visited the States so often on business that it isn’t funny.
Yet the answer I have to give my son is, “No haven’t been there”. I snarl at him… more because of my failings as a traveler. He gives me a strange look and turns back to watch the program. I know what’s going through his mind… “How can my father go all the way there and then not visit these beautiful places?”. My wife is giving me a withering look that says “Even our son now knows….”

My travels have taken me across the globe. I have been as Far East as Japan, Australia, and New Zealand, as far south as South Africa, to most countries in Europe and of course the USA and Canada. But ask me the question “What have you seen there?” and the answers going to be “Hotel Rooms, Conference Rooms and Airports”. I then read blogs like Travel Plaza, RK et al who write about visits with a passion. Its then that I think to myself whether I need to stop and smell the roses.

Haven’t travelled much in the last 3 years except for my visits to the USA. Now it seems like my travels will increase manifold with the business growing and all. Maybe I should make it a point to see places this time around. Will certainly try!! I will try to get the family involved as well. They don’t seem to believe me though.

I am a lousy traveler 😦

Brat Kids – Whose fault?

23 Oct

Just reading about the Prasad Bidappa episode. Now I don’t know the guy or his son or the true story so I can’t comment on it.

However I have seen kids of rich and famous parents misbehaving especially at the clubs in Bangalore. Fast cars, bikes and major attitudes, they hang out in the lounges and billiards rooms ill-treating the waiters and flaunting their parents’ wealth in general.

At the same time, I know of kids who grow up with money, are down to earth, not flashy, and look and act like the kid next door.

Is it the neauvo riche who have attitudes because they have suddenly come across wealth? Why do parents put expensive toys in the hand of immature children (cars, bikes, mobiles etc)? Is it their “parental inadequacies” (guilt factor) that force these parents to do this? I have an acquaintance whose son is 15 and runs up bills of Rs. 15,000 on an average every month. The excuse is “networking”. At what cost?

Oh… one more thing, the official “drinking age” in Karnataka is 18 (21 in Delhi and Maharashtra). Are we saying kids are mature enough at 18 to start drinking? I don’t think so.

The Day After

22 Oct

crackers.jpg

Lights at Home

Well another Deepavali has passed. To tell you the truth, I thought that there were less firecrackers and more traffic this year. So the pollution level remained the same.

Decided to take a walk around the neighbourhood to check things out. Amazed to see the different types of new crackers on show. The dogs were having a torrid time. Even the guy who normally barks at me (the dog.. NOT the owner) when I go on my morning walks looked at me and whined. Has anyone researched this I wonder…

Had a near miss when a “bottle rocket” whizzed past my ear…this was at a friends house but I dont think he did it on purpose … or did he 🙂

Anyway had an enjoyable long weekend. Lots of food to eat. Sweets and more sweets. Had a good trip to Melukote to visit our family diety. On the new Bangalore-Mysore highway it takes 2 hours to reach Melukote.

 Now….back to work this week. November is going to be a tough one. Lots of travel… on business NOT vacation.

Happy Deepavali

19 Oct

Deepavali is here. So need to be extra careful about driving in residential areas. Never know when you are driving over a lit firecracker 🙂

Great time of the year for me. I enjoy the lights and the sounds (though they are getting less). I remember when I was a kid that we used to look forward to getting up at four in the morning so that we could beat the guy next door to light the first cracker in the neighbourhood. The sign of “achievement” was to have the largest amount of burnt firecracker paper in front of ones house (even if it meant that you quietly swept the neighbour’s stuff so that it ended up in front of your house).

These days crackers are expensive and kids want to be eco-friendly. My son says he will not light a firecracker because he wants to save the environment.

Kids… you think you know them and suddenly they come up with this. Bravo !!

Anyway, Happy Deepavali to All. Have a good safe Deepavali.

Do we deserve better infrastructure?

18 Oct

Give our guys powerful automobiles and good roads and they drive like maniacs. Yesterday’s accident in Bangalore reinforces this opinion. I have seen these Volvo busses on Mysore road weaving in and out of traffic like motorcycles. These vehicles are easy to drive and have automatic transmission (unlike our other busses where the driver breaks his back to change gears). The result is that these guys drive like maniacs. I think these buses need a “governor” to control speed. My heart goes out to these people who were killed and hurt by the bus accident. It was not brake failure. The guy was trying to overtake someone and ended up on the wrong side of the road.

As I mentioned we found one Volvo (govt bus) weaving between lanes on Mysore road. When confronted he said “I drive it fast because it goes that fast”. So much for safety.

Another example, a few months ago the road in front of my house got reliad. For the longest time this road was full of bumps and potholes. Traffic on the road was slow but it was safe. Now with the new road newly laid, we now have cars, call center vans, school vans, motorcycles etc going at breakneck speeds. The road has now become a death trap. Just a matter of time before someone gets hurt. We have told the police about this but they do nothing. Fortunately someone is starting to build a house on the street, soon they will cut the road for their pipes which will then cut speed.

So do we deserve better infrastructure or do we need to drill  civic sense into people?