TRAVELLING ALONE

We cannot compare the benefits of travelling solo and in group, especially with friends. They have their own inclinations to get along with you, and at times, you love both. Generally, as we know, it has be interplay of both, external as well as internal factors.

But, ultimately, if we go by our inner call, then any such decision is a mix of factors acting in coordination that finally decide with which way we will go.

The first factor is the weaving of your thought process.

If you are a person who enjoys your own company, you would love to go for a solo trip where you can croon, dance, sit and talk, all coming from and going inside you.

The best thing about having such intense one-on-one with you that you easily follow your own path even if you are in a group of friends. Yes, the nature of your interaction with self changes accordingly.

Trips that are exploratory in nature have their best chances when they find someone like this on the journey. They find their ways, be among people or walking alone. They are the truth-seekers. They are the knowledge-seekers. They are the wisdom-seekers. And journeys seek them.

The second factor is your mood.

Irrespective of the proclivity of your conscious (and subconscious mind), it is your mood that first decides whether you would go a for trip at all and if it says yes, then what contours it will take – whether your mood is pushing for you to take a solitary break away from the world around you to look for some moments in your own company – or it is seeking to share what is inside you with your friends and a group trip along the highway or in the valleys or on the hills or anywhere you like is the perfect occasion for it.

The third factor is obviously the occasion.

It is again interplay of different factors. If you are a party goer, you will seek to turn every group occasion into a good party time. You, will, in fact, go to every extent possible to have those evenings or nights or days again and again.

If you are a normal guy or girl next door, you will go where the party goes. And even if you are a reluctant, self-contained soul, you will not hesitate to become part of the show because you know it is going to be just those hours.

Mind you folks, these are about normal existences. We are not taking about exceptions and exclusivities here. We are talking about life journeys here.

©SantoshChaubey

WAS IT LOVE?

A night of endless hesitations
Perplexing and reassuring both
In some moments
We would come together
Living the years between us
But the fear then would creep in
Reminding us of the void
That had sent us apart
I would often ask
Why it had to go this way
I can’t say about you
But your eyes speak the same
Was it love?
Well, we never spoke about
But I did care
About even smallest things
Life was building
Like a nest so delicate
Yet so vulnerable
That I had left everything else
To weave its wings
I still fly with it
And it was same that night
Expectations?
Well, I never had them
But it really helped
To see you flying as well

©SantoshChaubey

LOVE

It was just eternity
With eyes fixed at infinity
A distance was there
Mature like love in 30s
And experimental like
The love of those early 20s
Life was speaking
With life on its behalf
Still existing in those realms
Yet moving on as days go
The call was there
And it still echoes
Like an eternal bliss
As the beginning
That never sought its end
On a journey
That always looked beyond
An unspoken bond
Remains there
In life and beyond
You never know why it is
But you always know
What it takes, where it goes

©SantoshChaubey

THIRD POEM, FOURTH PROLOGUE

The third poem and the fourth prologue
Just like this day, just like that dialogue
Roaming in thoughts, roaming in the wild
Dancing in the sun, dancing like a child
Just yet another day that you got right
Just yet another night that talks bright
When words flow to find hidden places
When rhymes gel to carve new spaces
It was like yesterday, like its epilogue
It is for tomorrow with today’s prologue
Three days, three poems, and its ring
What is the next one is to be the zing
The dialogue has set things in motion
Let’s see if this image finds its caption

LetsTry - Copy

THIRD POEM AND FOURTH PROLOGUE

©SantoshChaubey

EXPECTED AMAZON RESPONSE ON “WOULD AMAZON SUBSCRIBE TO THIS ON ‘SUBSCRIBE AND SAVE’?”

While writing my longish mail on Amazon ‘Subscribe and Save’ category and tweeting it to Amazon, Amazon India and Jeff Bezos Twitter handles, I had not expected a prompt reply. It was based on my previous experiences. I have done this exercise with many companies – on some issue related to them. So far, my best experience has been with Dell India – its customer services team and its social media extensions.

And about my worst -well, there are many and picking a particular one is difficult. But if I am asked to pick one -I would say Eureka Forbes.

After consistently following multiple times, through phone and Facebook extension, I was forced to hang up, but the Eureka Forbes folks refused to buzz from their eternal slumber. Apart from many product and service related issues, I was not sent even my receipt that I was promised after making an online purchase for an Aquaguard Enhance water purifier (along with a freebie, that, too, never came).

And though a response from Amazon India over phone line has been efficient so far, its Facebook version was dull, and on the line seen so far, with so many companies.

I posted my write-up on the issue I am facing on Amazon India’s Facebook page. Obviously, it was the headline followed the link of the write-up. Soon, a message popped up, a reply from some guy entrusted to monitor Amazon India’s Facebook page. On expected, worn-out line, the person told me that ‘I needed to be specific’ in what I wanted to say.

Well, what can I say on this!

We folks spend so much time on writing about issues we face and expect that the concerned organization would at least take the pain to read them.

Well, I don’t know if that happened.

Because there was no further reply from any Amazon staff after I wrote back requesting that the person should open the link attached where I had written ‘very specifically’ about the problem I was facing.

And it was when it was not an outright criticism – but a suggestion along with conveying a potential problem that may see more of it in the days ahead.

AmazonFacebook

And on Twitter?

Well, here again, I tagged Twitter IDs of Jeff Bezos, Amazon, Amazon India and Amazon Help along with my write-up’s link.

But no response has come so far and its almost 24 hours now.

AmazonTwitter

Yes it was a weekend and there might be slippages but it looks quite awkward given the fact that there would be dedicated social media teams, even for Jeff Bezos Twitter handle.

It is not about Amazon or some other company’s track record of resolving problem(s) associated with services/products on offer. Most of the time they fail.

I hope it will not be this time given Amazon India’s track record and given the fact that E-commerce or online retail cannot dominate a business scene if it is not customer friendly.

I do this exercises randomly to get some handy information about how companies are treating their customers – about their marketing communication and public interface practices in a B2C environment of E-commerce that is slated to grow manifold.

Most of the companies and their honchos fail here, some miserably.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

WOULD AMAZON SUBSCRIBE TO THIS ON ‘SUBSCRIBE AND SAVE’?

Given the kind of depth Amazon has in online retail, along with its pioneering presence and global dominance, we can say the company will soon be India’s biggest online retailer, a market that is soon projected to have the world’s largest middle class. And the way it is moving up its product chains, it is leaving behind a widening gap for other biggies of the space, i.e., Flipkart, Snapdeal, Shopclues and so on, to fill.

Like many of its good initiatives, Amazon India started an easy to subscribe (and modify) ‘subscribe and save’ category last month. Under this category, buyers can monthly subscribe for products from among eight categories. Though the catalogue is pretty short, we can say it has begun on a good note. A customer has the option to opt for frequency of delivery – from one to six months – for each product.

There are two offers with this category that make it worth a pick.

The first is obviously the comfort of home delivery and Amazon has an efficient one.

The second is about the 10% discount on offer. If one subscribes for more than three products a month, a flat 10% discount on every product is yours.

Obviously, one can get a better deal in many wholesale markets of Delhi where the norm is between 15-20% discount. But here it is about the comfort of ordering from your smartphone or computer from anywhere you are, saving your flesh and soul from the nightmare of Delhi’s traffic and its overcrowded markets. I am talking about Delhi here because I stay here and my experiences pushed me to write this piece.

But in this case – with this ‘subscribe and save’ option – the comfort level of this convenient home delivery option is proving a burden, as well as an embarrassment.

How?

I recount here.

Last month I subscribed for some 10 products under ‘subscribe and save’ category. Two were bathroom air fresheners from Godrej (Godrej Aer Pocket Bathroom Fragrance) – of different fragrances. These two were delivered a week apart. In fact, every product of my order was delivered on different days.

So, that is there where the problem lies.

Amazon sent its guys some 8 to 10 times, stretch over some 10 days, to deliver those products I subscribed last month if I am recollecting properly.

There is always these messages popping up that your products has been packed, that it is ready to ship, that it has been shipped, that it will be delivered today. With the usual tag line – please keep cash or your card ready! Here I would like to mention another thing – none of the delivery guys were carrying the card swipe machine – even if I asked for the one sometimes.

It wastes your time. There is always this leftover in your mind that you have to be at home as the Amazon guy would come to deliver the product.

Also, on a social/societal note, your neighbours would obviously think what has happened to this guy that he is ordering so much online, even if you ordered the basic stuff you need every month. The problem of plenty that was never there!

Does it make any better business sense?

I was thinking to call Amazon for many days to register my thoughts. Today I got my call patched. The guy on the other side sounded sincere on my complaint and he said he would send the feedback up. But he also said that it was due to the cycle of availability of products. Amazon makes a product available to its customers as soon as it reaches its warehouses and, according to him, that is the reason behind the multiple runs of errands.

So, Amazon is incurring loss here. It is what a common ‘common sense’ says. After all, you need to pack the product – that costs. I would say, again of Godrej air fresheners – a small strip worth Rs. 45 was in a packing that would obviously be costly. And as I wrote, I had ordered two.

Then there is this wastage of manpower hours. All the products from a single order, with a tag date of 11 of every month, can be delivered on any chosen day before that tag date. It doesn’t make sense to send 10 guys to deliver 10 products on 10 different days – of a single order.

Or does it?

Does Amazon India see any logical sense in this logistical spiral?

Because I believe I am not alone in thinking so!

Amazon Subscribe n Save

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

Featured Image Courtesy: Screenshot from Amazon India website

SOME ‘SMART’ SMARTPHONE AFTERTHOUGHTS!

THE QUESTIONS

— How really smart a smartphone is?

— Should your smartphone be smart enough to make you look dumb?

— How long should the life of your smartphone be?

— Should there be a mental barrier on how much you should spend for a smartphone?

— What should be your upper mental barrier on the pricing front when you are looking for a new smartphone?

— Do smartphones with sky-high prices justify with smartness of their tech specs or it is just about that premium brand you are ready to pay for? In that case, you need to think if you are really smart enough?

— On an average, what percentage of a high-end smartphone features are fully used?

— What should be the line you need to draw between you and your smartphone usage habits?

— Should your smartphone be Hulk or Batwoman – the gigantic, ever-enlarging screens – or that four-inch or so curvaceous comfort?

— Should your smartphone be Barack Obama or Xi Jinping – should it add spontaneously to you – or should it make you cautious to add it to your lifestyle?

Smartphones

SOME ‘SMART’ SMARTPHONE AFTERTHOUGHTS!

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

LOVE – SOUTH INDIAN FILMS STYLE!

Funny – at its most insane!
Boisterous – at its most verbose!
Pampered – at its most mollycoddled!
Rowdy – at its most gaudy!
Outrageous – at its most audacious!
Cosmetic – at its most superficial!
Melodrama – at its most dramatic!

The hero:

  • Drives auto-rickshaw, or,
  • Is a bicycle riding college student, or,
  • Is a street vendor of vada-pao, or,
  • A goonda living in a slum.

The heroine:

  • Is from heaven.
  • From a family of high and mighty politicians, or,
  • A larger than life businessman, or,
  • A mafia Don flying in chartered plane.

Rarely, the narrative is developed with role-reversals.

Either the hero approaches the heroine or the heroine has the ‘instantaneous’ love-at-first-sight, no time is wasted in coming to the point – its direct and precise – irrespective of the ‘class’ difference – without going into details – like smooth and efficient!

Love happens so readily – only after few sitcom scenes – and the glues is so strong – that you feel that these films are the true representatives of a ‘classless’ society.

Either love is so ripe or directors are so experienced in these movies that they don’t waste any moment in nuances of going ‘in between the lines’ – or they refuse to see the beauty there that others see!

True post-modernists! Iconoclasts in their own league – so much so – that they have started a league of their own, their ‘own Masala’ within the larger ‘Masala Films’ genre! Proponents and followers of Communism should take their worldview (social take) on society seriously!

(P.S. – While randomly picking up a Dhanush’s movie on TV!)

(P.S. – South Indian cinema produces some of the finest movies in India every year. This is just about the so-called mainstream gibberish that is so prevalent even in the Mumbai cinema or the Hindi film industry – though, even there loves doesn’t happen so readily – and is certainly not ‘class-less’!)

🙂 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

THIS TRAILER IS SO FUNNY THAT I WATCHED IT TO LAUGH IT OFF..

MSG

This image is all about what MSG-2’s trailer means to me.

Normally, I don’t write about movies. Yes, I love watching them – but those that suit my taste. So, Citizen Kane is my favourite. Padosan is my favourite. Schindler’s List is an all time in. And I appreciate the art of filmmaking that has gone into making of ‘Haider’.

I do write about such movies. My personal collection goes with detailed analysis of them. Films are the best communication tool ever crafted and I respect the movies that respect filmmaking as an ‘art’ process.

And movies like MSG are certainly not there. In fact, it is such a product that it should not even register.

And that is exactly the reason why its trailer registered.

Its trailer told me how rubbish would be the movie and that how fool we are to worship such people as Gods or as our religious gurus next only to the God.

Yes, with most of the movies being produced here and there, one doesn’t need to watch trailers to make any opinion. Name of cast and crew and are enough to tell about the product (save those small time, obscure movies like ‘Court’ that are big on content and on everything creative).

But, then there is a silver lining – in some empty moments – when you want to watch something funny – not to recharge yourself – but just to continue in the flow of the moment – and that moment happened today.

I was sifting through television channels to catch something funny – some hilarious action stuff from C-grade movies that I do sometimes – when I found myself staring at and then watching this trailer in amusement. And that reflection soon turned into ‘sheer’ amusement.

The image above explains what the trailer is.

And the image is about nothing. I simply, randomly drew lines on my computer screen with a while background. I was dragging mouse on and on until I felt it was black enough to draw lines anymore.

The trailer is like those lines, the countless ones in the image, with no meaning and purpose. Yes, as a mind can stare even at a blank spot and think for hours, and no doubt, can draw conclusions or pointers to think further, similar process can apply even to this trailer.

But then this trailer is so bland, so bad in taste creatively (and therefore so funny) that you laugh it off – like I found myself stuck at it today – to laugh its blandness off – like I do with some C-grade action flicks whenever I catch them.

The trailer’s (or the movie’s) central protagonist is a controversial godman who continues to wield power.

And this C-grade trailer had all the D-grade elements like silly special effects, a flying, omnipresent and omnipotent but odd-shaped and oddly clad hero, funny and funnily shot miracles, badly written dialogues, grandiosely exaggerated frame settings showing everyone else a minion compared to the hero, bawdily stacked shots and gaudy song and dance sequences – a perfect curry to enjoy moments of some absent-minded laugh.

And like drawing this image, that took my time (as its resource), big money (as resource) would have been invested into making this trailer (or the movie).

But while I care for my time, trying to write something around this image to see my resources talking to me, the ones who have invested in this sort of production, they never care for their resources (or they never care wasting their resources).

And it is natural (and understandable) that I am not going to use the movie’s poster as the featured image of the article.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

MISFIT BARE BRICKS WALL, LADY, ASPIRING-RAPIST, AND ELEPHANT THE SAVIOUR..

In a palatial mansion, well fortified, with guards and otherwise, there is a wall, unplastered, of single row of bricks, looking ugly and totally out of place, like a blot on a serene landscape, like a patch on an Armani suit, waiting to be razed down.

On the inside of the wall, the villain, clad in a horse-riding sort of outfit, is vigorously trying to rape a woman. The woman is crying for help, in the mansion, guarded by a number of goondas in all shapes, sizes and colours.

Tension is building. Anger is simmering. When it reaches to the helping ears, away somewhere, riding on the waves of telepathy, it starts boiling. And the helping ears rush to help.

A big bang!! A loud noise is splashed across.

And the ugly, out of place bare bricks wall is suddenly down, receiving it’s freedom, away from this palatial mansion that is phony by the standards of the existence of the wall.

Now, the helping ears are in, right on the job, righteously and earnestly, riding on the waves of emotionally charged energy.

An elephant in teens is in on rampage in the mansion, beating and throwing the goondas here and there, chasing the ‘aspiring rapist’ owner of the mansion.

He is the saviour and he is here now. The tension is reaching its crescendo. Chairs are clutched more tightly and eyes are fixated more emotively.

Though the goons are giving him a tough fight, he is outmatching them, making whirlwind rounds of the hall of the mansion, it’s rooms, even running up the stairs.

As the good Vs evil fight progresses, more and more goondas are biting dust.

Now, the boiling point of anger is right here.

And the intensity of it has sent the goondas packing, broken and aching. Desperate and running, the ‘aspiring-rapist’ reaches to his gun somehow and is now taking aim.

There is pin drop silence in the ambience. The watchers have left grazing midway.

But..but, while taking aim, the daddy goonda, the ‘aspiring-rapist’ had not seen the elephant in teens reaching right on his neck, charging towards him bringing down the pillars of the mansion in the hall, already uprooted by the sheer force of the teen elephant’s anger and waiting to be pushed only to clear the way.

The saviour is upon him now, ready to snatch the gun. And lo n behold! The gun is snatched and thrown away by the saviour. The next moment, the daddy goonda is within full grip of our teen hero. In a stylishly choreographed move, he tosses the villain up and away.

Bang again! A glass wall is smashed down and the daddy goonda is on the floor of the next hall of the palatial mansion.

Now bruised and devoid of his supporting brigade, fear of life takes over him. He sees his death in the ferocious eyes of the saviour. He makes a speedy drift to run away, to find a way out, and there he goes, saving his life from the ongoing wrath of the saviour.

The atmosphere is emotionally supercharged now.

Finding the ground cleared, now the saviour, the elephant in teens, looks back for the lady and here she is, safe and unharmed.

It releases the tension of the grazers and they are back munching while watching the emotional reunion of the caller and the called.

Tears are in their natural free flow mode. Many of the viewers in the theatre are clapping, with tearful eyes. Some of them have left even their seats in the excitement of the emotionally supercharged ambience.

The chatter, relieved and excited at the same time, is praising the saviour for his heroism and its timeliness while graduating to the next scene.

The Classic Indian Masala Cinema
Jai Ho Jai Ho

— thoughts, forced to go expressive, while watching a random movie scene —

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/