Sunday, December 18, 2005

Geocluster event for Kansas City Region

I was watching the news of the thanks giving sale that was happening, with people waiting outside the shops as early as 3 in the morning daring the snow and cold and importantly missing their sleep over it!! I had felt the sale is definitely not worth the effort to go out in cold and miss my sleep over it. But one question still remained in my mind. What can be those situations/events which are worth braving the cold and snow and losing sleep?

Today I came across one such event which was really worth the effort of waking early on a Saturday morning and making it in cold and snow. It was the Geocluster event for the Kansas City region. We reached the venue around 12:30 PM and the event started by 1:00 PM and ended around 4:30 PM. Yup, I am giving the start and end time together because the event rolled out so smoothly that the next time I checked my watch was when it finally downed the curtains!!

As like any gathering, this too followed the customs by starting off with the welcome note. Almost immediately was the Break the clues round. It consisted of clues which would lead to the movie name. There were 14 clues to squeeze and extract the movies names from. We were successful in breaking 8 of them and the winners were just one ahead of us. They had got 9 correct!! The next event was a superb Jugalbandhi by Anand and Supradeep. All the pieces played were good. Of it I liked the Bombay tune very much. This was followed by 2 dance performances. The first one was by Neena for the “Doola Re” song from the movie Devdas in the background. A gifted dancer and it was showing in every step of the dance. She was followed by the Sudhakarbabu for “Prabhu Jackson”. He started off for the famous song “Deekah Tumko” from K3G and ended with a Tamil/Telugu song, I guess maybe from a Prabhu Deva movie. The Hrithik Roshan steps from K3G were well executed. I don’t know if the steps for the second song was his own or from the movie, but it was entertaining!! But what I am still unable to understand is the name “Prabhu Jackson”. If the second song is really from a Prabhu Deva movie as I am guessing, the apt name would have been “Hrithik Prabhu”!! If it is not a Prabhu Deva movie than I am totally lost!! Anyway the immediate call for lunch after the dance halted my deciphering thoughts!! Whether it is “Prabhu Jackson” or “Hrithik Prabhu” it was an entertaining one!!!

The appraisal piece enacted during the lunch was the most memorable!! Apt timing and mostly a direct take from the recently concluded appraisal process!!!

This was followed by stunners by other accounts, event. This was really a stunner for me. I did not know that my manager (Sreeni) could “really” sing. He sang 3 songs from 3 different Hindi movies. He has a good voice. ( No, No I am not flattering!! My appraisal is already closed!!!!!) Something I did not know earlier.

This was followed by an event exclusively for kids!! Balloons were tied to the left leg of each kid which they had to burst. The “”Kids”” took over from the kids and finally burst the balloons using forks!!

This was followed by the Dumb Charades event. People were divided into different teams based on the colors they had!! There were 3 rounds, 1 Hollywood round, 1 Bollywood round and a books round for appetizing the book lovers!!

The last event of the day was the Tumbola!!! Waiting for the desired number to be called and crossing out the called numbers on the rows/columns!! Each first fully completed row attracted a prize followed by a prize for the full house!! This was again a thoughtful event which saw almost 100% participation.

The curtains were drawn at around 4:30PM thus putting an end to this memorable event though people were still enthusiastic to continue and enjoy. The organizers deserve a good round of applause for the well organized event. Every item was thoughtfully planned and executed. Every minute spent at the event was worth the effort people had put in braving the snow and cold.

~Narendra V Joshi

Monday, December 12, 2005

Sleep: The Sustainer of all life

My computer clock here shows 6:30 AM and has added a count to my zillionth peaceful sleep filled, night. I had slept around 10 PM yesterday night and woke up now!! Another 15 ½ hours to go for the zillionth + 1 to happen!!!

Wonder how many hours God might have spent researching to create this wonderful element called sleep. So peaceful and wonderful and generous!! The more you sleep the more you will want to sleep. Never asks a question or never comments. Never asks for something in return. All it takes is, the clock ticking to 10 PM and my head touching the pillow; and boooom… I wake up and find its past 6 in the morning!!! It’s like you start to code a new program and before you can realize, your code is out there sitting pretty!! I think waiting for the clock to go to 10 PM is a barrier I have put for myself. A feeling of some sort of guilt encompasses me if it’s still not 10 PM and I am planning to sleep. If only instead of an hour the day light savings was to advance the clock by 2 or 3 hours it would have been really good!!!

Sit in front of TV or have a book in hand, you can sleep. It doesn’t matter whether you had food or still feeling hungry. It doesn’t matter whether you have your exams the next morning or if the world is going to end in an hour!! Sleep is like time which doesn’t wait for anybody.

Assuming that everyone sleeps for 8 hours a day, I wonder what we would have done if sleep was not at all created by God. Currently it is 8 hours sleep, 8 hours work and 8 hours for other activities. If sleep was removed then that additional 8 hours had to be equally divided among the remaining two or maybe 16 hours for one and 8 hours for the other. Further there would have been no use of pillows and comforters and sleeping bags etc, except maybe used only in hospitals. Don’t know what we would be doing at night if we are not sleeping. Or maybe God would have made a day to be only of 16 hours or day with no darkness at all. That would mean that either earth would never rotate or God would have created 2 suns. Now if earth would never rotate then one part of the earth is always in darkness and one with always light. If this is the case the part which is always in light would have been burning hot and part which is always in darkness would have been bitter cold. Else if we had 2 Suns then it would have been burning hot always. Either of which cannot sustain life. Further, if we go by theories which suggest a direct relation between speed of earth’s rotation and gravity, again we can see that life is threatened.

This proves beyond doubt that sleep is the most important element on earth. It is sleep which is sustaining all life on earth!!! Air, Water, life, food, work everything depends on sleep. It is almost impossible to imagine a world without sleep!!!!!!!!!

Yet sleep has been one of the most looked down and neglected element. Work-shy, laziness, lethargy etc have been the words for this crucial, life sustaining element. More research and propaganda is needed to fully understand the concept of sleep and its life sustaining characteristics. The day people start understanding and appreciating the importance of sleep, the world would start becoming a better place.

~Narendra V Joshi