Thursday, December 09, 2004

Of Tapped Telephones and Latin Codes

Beware of the office telephones for they might be tapped. Yours truly had one horrifying experience while yapping away to glory with one of his friends.

The conversation had just reached its zenith when the operator suddenly screams into our respective auditory canals. And this is what he said - "Arre, Bus kar! Bahut ho gaya! Phone aa raha hai (Hey You! Stop it! It's enough now. There's a call coming)."

Squirming with embarrassment, I bid a hasty good-bye to my friend, who by the way, refuses to talk to me since that fateful day and continues to believe that I work in a weird and sordid organisation where employers listen in on calls.

Which means that you must no longer use office phones to bitch about the organisation or snigger at the unruly locks of a senior. Coz, as this numbing experience proves, Dear Mr EPABX Operator can and does eavesdrop on conversations.

So, unless you wanna make a hasty exit from the esteemed organisation, do stay away from the killer phones.

Solution 2: Learn Latin and conduct all telephonic conversations in this difficult tongue. I am sure Mr Operator won't understand phrases like Et tu Brute and summum bonum and will soon give up listening in.

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Of Big Bulls and Delhi Roads

Accidents on Delhi's killer roads are no rarity. Our very own Swaty and her hubby Manas had a bad experience last week while wending their way past Nizamuddin Bridge.

It was close to midnight as the couple continued on their homeward journey when suddenly, a bull 'detached' itself from the surrounding darkness and chose to appear directly in the path of the mobike.

Swerving to avoid contact with the ghoulish creature, Manas loses control of the machine, and falls to the ground. The Yamaha proved to be 'Maha' and chose to fall on top of him for lack of a better parking space.

Swaty had fallen off the bike too but then she was up and about in a jiffy, rushing to the side of her husband who had blacked out for some terrifying moments.

Imagine the scene - damsel in distress at the scene of a midnight mishap. And guess the number of vehicles who would stop and help? Yes, you guessed right - None.

A number of vehicles did slow down but when it came to playing Good Samaritan, Delhites try so hard not to be saints. But there was certainly a happy ending.

The knight in shining armour this time was an unlikely one - a kindly soul riding an Eicher tractor. Between the two of them, Swaty and the Good Samaritan managed to extract the mobike which had been busy enjoying a horse-ride on Manas' back.

Hubby dear regained consciousness soon after and was lucky enough to escape sans fractures. Swaty suffered only a few bruises and was back in office after a day's well-deserved rest.

And what of the Good Samaritan? Well, it must suffice to reveal that the anonymous soul is still out there somewhere, waiting to perform his next saintly act. May his tribe increase.

Of Business Boys and Visiting Cards

An injustice has come to our notice. Business Bureau boys - Debjit, Salu, Prashant and Sumit were rewarded with individual visiting cards, which they will flash at five-star buffet lunches.

And at their sources too. Is this discrimination or what? Are we not humans too? Are our dietary requirements any different from what Business Beat Beasts need to sustain their work?

Are our digestive systems not the same? So, how come they are getting this additional incentive to stuff their guts with blackberry icecream.

Haven't we too dreamt of flashing our 'Bond. James Bond' cards all over that ruthless over-inquisitive PR guy.

A complaint has already been launched with the National Human Rights Commission and they have promised to put an end to such unjust practices as soon as their members get their visiting cards printed.

Boo-hoo! Life sure is miserable.

Friday, November 05, 2004

Of Courts and Court Cases

We had a not-so-pleasant brush with the judiciary last month.

The Apex Court had put a month-long stay order on our publication after litigant Prashant Sahoo filed a case against us in court. He complained that we invaded his privacy when we reported on his Dubai 'trip' in a previous issue.

Spewing venom at this publication's editor, the worthy scribe made his irritation pretty apparent.

"I had no plans to go to Dubai and I was not supposed to be sent there either. The entire story was mere fabrication and I seek justice from the honourable court. The episode cost me emotional hurt and I have sued them for a million dollars,"
he told reporters at a press conference here.

"I am sick of the paparazzi in this country. They offer me no peace. When I go home, they are there. When I come to office, they are there. God knows if they have installed hidden cameras. Why can't they harass filmstars and leave us poor journalists alone,"
added a miffed Prashant.

Of Corrigendums and Immolation Bids


We are extremely sorry that Prashant resorted to such an extreme step. We had already conveyed our apologies to him. Out story was based on an unofficial source who provided us with false and biased information.

Following the publication of the story, our source mysteriously vanished. Reports later stated the accused was seen holidaying in the backwaters of Kerala.

Since we have no means to trace him, we offer an unconditional written apology to Prashant asking him to take back the case against us and settle the matter out-of-court.

We also beg Prashant to consider the plight of millions of our readers who have not had the chance of getting Office News updates for a month now. This publication is like manna for them, without which they cannot even contemplate surviving.

We have had frantic calls asking us to renew publication and there have been several self-immolation bids as well.

Prashant! Take pity and let this blessed publication continue its work of divine inspiration.

At the same time, we would like to remind Prashant, that if and when he goes to Dubai, he should certainly get some chocolates from there for his journalistic brethren. After all, it's his duty before God - to care for his colleagues.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Of Prashant and Passport Glitches

Yes, according to unofficial sources, Prashant was supposed to see the sights of Dubai and make the best of a journalistic assignment.

However, a passport hitch came in his way and ensured that he stays put in India.

Bad Luck, Prashant. We hope you get a chance to visit Dubai soon, especially during the Dubai festival so that you could use the opportunity to buy plenty of expensive gifts and chocolates for your loving office colleagues.

And this is a reminder to all you people out there. Get your passport right now.

Of Anima and Broken Ribs

Statutory Warning: Stay clear of Anima these days.

For those of you not clued in, she's been meeting wrestlers, body-builders and boxers in the previous weeks, as part of her duties at the Sports Desk.

So in case you are in the mood to get your shins kicked or some vital bones broken to bits, try and irritate her in some way or the other.

Believe me, she has all the right contacts to send you to Elysium as well. Quivering sources also testify, on condition of anonymity, that Anima has picked up some sparring tips and is already accused of causing some muscle sprains, black eyes and sore chins.

Friday, October 29, 2004

Of Anurag and Dehradun Trips

If you think the sparkle is missing from Anurag's eyes these days, you won't be too far from the truth.

The happy-go-lucky lad is down in the dumps after missing a date with environmentalist Vandana Shiva.

Anurag was promised by his news editor he would be sent to Dehradun to attend Shiva's conference, IF he transformed some press releases into decent stories.

The office mascot came through with his trademark exuberance but the editor threw a spanner in the works by deciding to award the juicy assignment to the Dehradun correspondent.

Don't worry Anurag, we're sure you will get even better assignments in the future. So, keep your chin up and keep flashing that brilliant smile.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Of Icecreams and Other Treats

Good News for all icecream fans at office. Mother Dairy has launched three new flavours this season. The bonanza includes the 'Coffee', 'Choco-Vanilla' and 'Choco-Orange' flavours.

Waiting for an opportunity to try them out? Ask Debjit. He recently 'achieved' two years of wedded bliss with honey Sucharita. Do I hear legions of colleagues hankering for a treat?

Monday, October 25, 2004

Of Shambhuji and Curd Rice

Shambuji has finally 'fallen' or rather 'risen' in love. Having once tried out the 'Curd rice' at a rival canteen, Shambuji can now think of nothing else.

While working, visions of a steaming plate of delicious curd rice blur his eyes and hamper his concentration.

He even dreams of delectable curd oozing out in an ocean of shimmering rice grains.

Sources say that Shambuji is consulting a psychiatrist to help him get over his infatuation. Get well soon, Shambuji.

And may we suggest that you commit 'adultery' with the above-mentioned flavours of icecream.

Of Canteens and Pretty Damsels

Hordes of our bachelors colleagues are making a beeline for the rival canteen nowadays.

Reports indicate that a certain pretty damsel who happens to be the daughter of proprietor might be responsible for the sudden rise in the eatery's clientele at lunchtime.

Maidens from the our office also frequent the canteen but for a more ostensible reason – that of edible food.

The lack of presentable males in the vicinity would certainly be a turn-off otherwise.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Of Graveyard Shifts and Reticent Seniors

The monotony of Graveyard shifts is occasionally broken by sorties to the all-night paratha shop near Shivaji Stadium.

On other nights, a good book can help keep the blues away. And sometimes, you have the good fortune of having a 'friendly' senior and a 'Bhasha' trainee sharing the same shift.

Please make note of the word `friendly' here. Coz spending six graveyard hours with a reticent senior who refuses to open his mouth, is akin to third-degree torture.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Of Rats and Roaches

Reports suggest that a mysterious creature has been recently haunting the Features desk. Black in colour and resembling a giant Jerry (of 'Tom and Jerry' fame), the animal has been eliciting screams from trainees, by popping in/out/under cabinets at regular intervals.

A cockroach was also spotted in the vicinity. Late Mr Cockroach was mercilessly crushed under the heel of the Desk head.

Advice for future Mag Desk Trainees? Well! Arm yourselves with Baygon sprays and be prepared for some heavy-duty military action before the place turns into a modern-day version of Noah's Ark.

Friday, October 22, 2004

Of Stray Mongrels and Posh Cars

A stray mongrel was caught in flagrante delicto relieving himself on a hub cap of the editor's car.

Although the accused was immediately shooed away, sources say the damage was already done. The hub cap of the front wheel on the right side of the vehicle is now showing signs of rust.

Police are now combing the premises to capture the conniving beast and export him to South Korea, a nation where man's so-called best friend is considered a delectable dish.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Of Salary slips and ATM Cards

Yesterday, passersby were disturbed by a dreadful wailing emanating from the office administration block and premises of the Bank of India. It seems our Salary Slips and ATM cards are very angry at our not having picked them up yet.

According to psychiatrist Dr Sanjay Chugh, loneliness and neglect makes them prone to moods of depression which might lead to some Dharmendra-style sooooocides.

Colleagues are therefore requested not to further prolong their agony and in the interest of people’s eardrums, PLEASE go and collect your salary slips and ATM cards a.s.a.p.