Wednesday, 29 October 2008


My friend Chaitra from college days has this habit of cutting her nails only on Tuesday. Once when she was in a very mellow mood she let me into the secret “You get money if you cut your nails on Tuesday”.
I laughed at her on the face.
“Try it & then come back & laugh at me” she said loftily.
Ofcourse I didn’t try it.

Ummm....I meant ofcourse I didn’t try it right away.

Well…you have to understand the situation.
Here is a close friend you share 9 hrs in a day for around 4 yrs[3 yrs in college & 1 yr at work(she got me my 1st job)]. Week after week, month after month….year after year she very prayerfully cuts her nails on Tuesdays. I mean…..She seems totally rational in every other matter “well maybe….just maybe, she knows something you don’t. Anyways you have to cut your nails off some day or the other, might as well cut it on a Tuesday, what’s the BIG DEAL…. you don’t lose money….u are supposed to be getting it” & so on… left brain battled it out with my right brain.

Ofcourse the crooked brain errr…I mean the left brain won. So one Tuesday I stealthily cut my nails & waited. And what do you know……….an old acquaintance who borrowed 180 rupees, SEARCHED me out & returned it.

Well ok…technically I didn’t get more money; I just got my own money back. But it was “The money” I had given up hope of ever getting back. Now when I think of it I feel, if I had got some money just like that, I may not been convinced so fast. But this was money which I never expected to get. I was sold.

After that day I try to time my version of manicure for Tuesdays. Ofcourse there have been many a tuesday when I forgot to. And ofcourse it was my loss though I never could prove it. And now you wonder whether it still works. And I tell you…. IT WORKS.

And before you ask, yeah I cut my nails yesterday. And before you ask again….if I didn’t, you can bet your last dirham I wouldn’t get my salary within this coming week.

So now how many of you are convinced???????????

p.s – Chaitra also says “Don’t wear new clothes on Saturdays. If you do, you don’t get to wear new clothes for the whole of the next year”

Thursday, 23 October 2008

So what’s the catch???????

I resigned from my present company around 3 weeks back. I didn’t at all want to resign. I was pressurized into it. Nope, its nothing like what you are thinking. Everybody in the company begs(in the manner of speaking) me to stay; the HO offered me a higher package in a bid to entice me to stay. I was all too willing but for my better-half.

Yeah I’m holding it against him. I’m so angry with him for doing this to me. The fact that he has valid reasons does not hold any water right now. I’m hopping mad. So why did I resign if I didn’t want to? The same reason why I always end up doing what he wants. I hate to admit it but his foresight is far superior to mine. It has always rescued us from tight situations & saved us a lot of heart-ache.

He told me to give my resignation with 1 months notice in August but I dug my heels in & told him all the reasons why I wanted to keep working.
His reasons were many but his explanation was simple “The children need you to be with them”. Heart of hearts I knew it too but then what about ME????

For more than 7 years I was a stay at home mother who kept house & looked after not only my kids but also my in-laws who stayed with us then. I patiently waited for my 2nd child to start school & only then went back to work. I compromised with the type of job I took, simply because of the close proximity of the office from my house. I enjoy my work but do admit that I suffer pangs of guilt when I think about the kids.

I raged, begged, cajoled in turn but he never budged from his decision. In the end I gave in mutinously around a month back(yeah, yeah I know he is right but what about ME???)

I put forward my own terms half hoping it will turn him off.

1. I want to work till the end of the year.
2. I want a broad band Internet connection at home(I 'almost' never go online when I’m at home, so we never felt the need to upgrade the Dial-up connection till today. YES I have written all my posts at work:-D).
3. I want Dhs.****.** pocket-money every month.

The 1st 2 terms he agreed to immediately. I half regretted why I didn’t say 6 months notice.
But he put his foot down on the pocket-money. He said he didn’t see the need to give me any. All the money which came into the house was OURS & that was it. I agreed with him but explained I needed separate cash coz I had a few plans up my sleeve which I was going to pursue if I was going to sit at home full-time & I needed the confidence that the money was mine to spend as I saw fit.

He looked slightly alarmed at the way my brains were working. Ofcourse he did not agree & so it has been going on until this past week.

Then suddenly around 4 days back he agreed…...just like that.

I stared at him slack-jawed waiting for the conditions which usually comes with these kind of deals.

“There is none” he assured me quite amused at my disbelief.

Recovering slightly, I insisted “Say I agree”

“I agree” he said gravely.

“No, not like that, say I agree to give you Dhs.****.** EVERY MONTH” I said staring into his eyes to grasp his intentions.

“I agree to give you Dhs.****.** every month” he repeated without hesitation.

I sat back in total surprise.

After 2 minutes of silence…..

“Say I agree to give you Dhs.****.** before the 5th of every month”

“I agree to give you Dhs.****.** before the 5th of every month” he said dutifully.

At a loss for words, I went into the bedroom to sit down & take stock of the whole situation.

Five minutes later, I entered the living room in a rush….

“Say I agree to give you Dhs.****.** before the 5th of every month & will not borrow it back 3 days later like how I usually do"

I agree to give you Dhs.****.** before the 5th of every month & will not borrow it back 3 days later like how I usually do” he chanted in merriment.

I just couldn’t take it in. I mean…what’s the catch. Long before also I had asked for pocket money like this & he hadn’t budged. What caused this sudden change of mind after all these years & that too in these past few days?????
I woke him up from sleep 2 nights backs……

“Say I agree to give you Dhs.****.** before the 5th of every month, will not borrow it back 3 days later like how I usually do & will not ask you what u do with it”

I agree to give you Dhs.****.** before the 5th of every month, will not borrow it back 3 days later like I usually do & will not ask you what u do with it ” he repeated sleepily after me.

I’m still in shock. He NEVER commits to anything if he can. But if he does he keeps it 110%.

So what’s the catch??????????? What is it that I'm missing out here???

Where are all of u when I need u????????????


Sunday, 19 October 2008

in the line of Fire(d)

Last evening when I was about to leave office I received a call from one of our senior consultants regarding some issue. After arriving at a conclusion, we went on to wind up the conversation when he casually told me to expect a surprise by fax the next morning. Matching his tone, I asked him whether it was good news or bad news. He just laughed & said mysteriously “Depends on how you look at it” before cutting the line.

All the way to work this morning I wondered what it could be. Going by how the company procedures worked I was quite sure it couldn’t be good news. As soon as I reached I checked for faxes & ofcourse there were pages & pages of correspondence waiting. I walked towards my seat rifling thru the pages when the Marketing Manager called out a cheery Good Morning. At the same moment my eyes fell on a Termination Notice addressed to the Marketing Manager.

To say I was stunned was an understatement. I stood at my table & looked at him blankly. He peered thru the sandblasted glass partition & repeated “Good Morning Nancy”. I just walked across to his table & gave the sheet of paper to him. I stood there undecided as I watched him read it & re-read it. Slowly I backed out of the cabin, went to my chair & sat down.

I felt like the lowest of beings for being the one who gave him the bad news. All sorts of thoughts jumbled thru my mind…. It is not easy to get a job in Dubai especially when you’ve crossed the 40-45 mark. He had his whole family here….his wife didn’t work, his kids were still studying. He just had 30 days to find another job or leave the country.

We all knew his marketing record for the past 6 months was miserable. Business was at an alltime low & we needed new orders desperately. The past 2 months showed some orders trickling in but it came nowhere near the Dhs.500,000 mark, which was his target. The Head Office had already warned him twice before so I guess this time they resorted to drastic measures.

But how could they just FAX a termination letter….a person at the managerial level didn’t at all deserve this kind of treatment….no, scratch that, nobody deserves that kind of treatment.

The worst was when I first got my hands on the letter, read the subject…….just for a split second thought it was addressed to me.

Monday, 13 October 2008

Judge ye not.....

I take a deep breath, chew my lips unconsciously & fight the demons in my mind… I have to???? Should I reveal it or not????

This past 1 year, especially the last 6 months have been wonderful. It was a whole new world out here for me. I met so many wonderful people thru my blog, learnt so many new things, opened my mind to new fundas, lived it up a little, felt almost like a celebrity when my comments hit 30, preened a little whenever anybody wrote “Good Post” & then some more when somebody else posted “oh Nancy, this was hilarious”.

How do I tell you, how much this blog & all of u mean to me? Seriously, none of you have any idea of the intensity of my feelings……you may not believe, but I suffer from severe stage fright. I am the kinds who cannot walk into my own living room if there are more than 6-8 people sitting there. People are usually surprised to see my better-half serving tea & snacks when they come visiting. The truth is that the pressure of 8 pair of eyes watching me walk in, just makes me break into sweat and soon the teacups start delicately tinkling in their saucers.

According to friends, I come across as reserved & sort of snooty at first but soon the ice melts & they suffer the effects of global warming…….now they don’t know which is worse.

At home, I give the kids stiff competition for the "loudest, noisest, crankiest......."award. They have in me a mother who dances with them when they are bored but also a mother who doesn't hesitate to smack them when they decide to 'REALLY' act up.

Sitting in front of a computer screen, it is easier for me to be what I am……I can 'almost' effortlessly write positive, humorous posts about the neighbours or the transportation system but when it comes to baring my heart I still have a long way to how sans merci mentions towards the end of her recent post about her apprehensions of being judged. She just put across feelings I was unable to express until today.

To put it simply......I'd hate for U to think badly of that we interact regularly & are like good friends in our blog world….

Anyways I better get to the point …….all this while, I’ve been mustering up courage to reveal something which will probably change the way you will view me.

At first, I thought I just won’t tell you….simple enough isn’t it???? But then I realized I owe u…….I’ll be guilty of leading you on. You more than anyone else have the right to know the truth

At the risk of losing what little credibility I have, I confess……

I was 22yrs old when I committed the act in “A Pinch of Salt

p.s: does it sound terrible:-(??????

Thursday, 9 October 2008

A Pinch of Salt

My mom had the habit of sleeping in front of the TV. Those were the days when good old Doordarshan was the only channel available[atleast in my house]. Every Friday they used to telecast a-not-so-very-old Hindi Movie which we would eagerly wait for. At 10.00pm sharp every Friday night, the 3 of us ie. my father, younger sister & I would plonk ourselves on the sofa & watch. My mother would try to finish all her works by 10.45 before joining us.

I don’t know why she even bothered to sit up because she would lean back against the sofa & almost immediately go to sleep. She would get up with a start, during the advertisement break or new-break & ask us what is happening with the story. In the beginning we used to tell her but soon we got tired & asked her why she bothered because as soon as the movie restarted she would go back to sleep. But she never listened. She would continue to sit with us till atleast 3/4th of the movie was over & then finally admit defeat & go off to bed.

One such Friday night, my father had gone off on an official tour & it was only the 3 of us on the sofa with my mother sitting in the middle. As usual, she slept halfway thru the movie. My sister & I grinned, at the sight of her leaning back & sleeping with her mouth slightly open.

An evil thought occurred to me. I went out of the room quietly, came back with the salt-shaker from the dining table & slowly shook the salt into her mouth. It was quite a difficult task but I managed somehow. My sister shook her head at me warningly but she also couldn’t help grinning at the sight. We then, sat back to watch the movie. As usual, when the advertisements came on, my mother got up with a start. Both of us sisters looked at her with expectantly. She coughed slightly, swallowed, jumped off the sofa & rushed to the wash-basin to spit out the salt.

How we laughed…..we held our stomachs & laughed. She came back like a bat out of hell & gave me the beating of my life with her bare hands......THULP, THULP, SLAP, BANG, DISHKYAAOO.
I was a sitting duck………never in my wildest dreams did I think she was going to react so violently otherwise I would have run for cover. It had been ages since she beat me last.

Thru the beating I heard her shouting furiously “It was ok if she put a pinch for a joke, she's emptied the whole bottle into my mouth”…..THWACK, DISHKYAAAOO.

“Sorry, sorry…….I didn’t realize…………OWWWW SORRY” I wailed thru my tears.

My sister sat there looking like she was in terrible pain, trying to control her expressions valiantly before before giving up & spilling into peals of laughter at my sorry state.

Now for the audience question in Doordarshan program style:
What do you think of the whole episode?
And how old do you think I was, when I committed this dastardly act?

Edited to add: Answer is posted in the next post;-P

Saturday, 4 October 2008

Taggetty Tagged

I have been tagged by Balvinder Singh to post any of my
FIVE ADDICTIONS. Since then, I have been breaking my head as to what my addictions are…..

Anyways, for the 1st one I didnt have to think very hard……

1. Once I put up a post I keep checking to see there are any comments. It’s fast becoming an addiction:-(

2. On week-ends I hate to make dinner. Is that an addiction? To find out if it was, I tried to imagine how I wd react if I had to cook on weekend nights….my mood changed immediately…the eyebrows lowered dangerously & I even stopped typing for a few minutes trying to control the urge to throw a chair across the room. The withdrawal symtoms were quite clear......yes, that decides it,…it is an addiction.

3. Arrrghhh....this is getting tough…..I don’t drink tea, coffee, alcohol, so what else..….oh yes I just remembered I have to have pepsi with biriyani & need to have ice-cream after the biriyani….ohhh yess it is an addiction.

4. Spider Solitaire was an addiction at one time. But once I cleared the difficult level, then the interest just cooled off. Ditto with Minesweeper. But this happens only with some games, all other stuff just don’t interest me to begin with.

5. Ummmm……..does opening the fridge, standing there looking into it & deciding what to make for dinner, be called an addiction coz I do that a lot.

I found this TAG quite difficult to do coz I had to think a lot for this one. Long back I wasn’t able to have coffee one evening & had a terrible headache. I didn’t like the idea of being addicted to anything & so quit the habit of coffee that day itself. I guess I don’t quite like the idea of being dependent too much on anything

The rest of the instructions..........
The persons who have been tagged have to link the blogger who tagged them and also extend the tag to five or more bloggers and link them too.

Now I tag......

Abraham Menacherry


Goofy Mumma

I scribble Here &


Thursday, 2 October 2008

Adam Khoo

A Blog Post by Singapore's Youngest Millionaire Adam Khoo

Some of you may already know that I travel around the region pretty frequently, having to visit and conduct seminars at my offices in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Su Zhou(China).

I am in the airport almost every other week, so I get to bump into many people who have attended my seminars or have read my books.

Recently, someone came upto me on a plane to KL and looked rather shocked. He asked, 'How come a millionaire like you is travelling economy?' My reply was, 'That's why I am a millionaire.' He still looked pretty confused. This, again confirms that greatest lie ever told about wealth(which I wrote about in my latest book 'Secrets of Self Made Millionaires'). Many people have been brainwashed to think that millionaires have to wear Gucci, Hugo Boss, Rolex etc. (I shop at G2000 by the way) and sit on first class in air travel. This is why so many people never become rich because the moment they earn more money, they think that it is only natural that they spend more, putting them back to square one.

The truth is that most self-made millionaires(not those lucky who inherited money) are frugal and only spend on what is necessaryand of value. That is why they are able to accumulate and multiply their wealth so much faster. Over the last 7 years, I have saved about 80% of my income while today I save only about 60% (because I have my wife, motherin law, 2 maids, 2 kids, etc. to support). Still, it is way above most people who save 10% of their income (if they are lucky). I refuse to buy a first class ticket or to buy a $300 shirt because I think that it is a complete waste of money. However, I happily pay $1,300 to send my 2-year old daughter to Julia Gabriel Speech and Drama without thinking twice.

When I joined the YEO(Young Entrepreneur's Organization) a few years back (YEO is an exclusive club open to those who are under 40 and make over $1m a year in their own business) I discovered that those who were self-made, thought like me. Many of them with net worths well over $5m, travelled ecomony class and some even drove Toyota 's and Nissans. I noticed that it was only those who never had to work hard to build their own wealth (there were also a few ministers' and tycoons' sons in the club) who spent like there was no tomorrow. Somehow, when you did not have to build everything from scratch, you do not really value money. This is precisely the reason why a family's wealth (no matter how much) rarely lasts past the third generation. Thank god, my rich dad(oh no, I sound like Kiyosaki) foresaw this terrible possibility and refused to give me a cent to start my business.

Then some people ask me, 'What is the point in making so much money if you don't enjoy it?' The thing is that I don't really find happiness in buying branded clothes, jewelry or sitting first class. Even if buying something makes me happy, it is only for a while. It does not last. Material happiness never lasts, it just give you a quick fix. After a while you feel lousy again and have to buy the next thing which you think will make you happy. I always think that if you need material things to make you happy, then you live a pretty sad and unfulfilled life.
Instead, what makes ME happy is when I see my children laughing and playing and learning so fast. What makes me happy is when I see my companies and trainers reaching more and more people every year in so many more countries. What makes me really happy is when I read all the emails about how my books and seminars have touched and inspired someone's life. What makes me really happy is reading all your wonderful posts about how this BLOG is inspiring you. This happiness makes me feel really good for a long time, much much more than what a Rolex would do for me.

I think the point I want to put across is that happiness must come from doing your life's work(be in teaching, building homes, designing, trading, winning tournaments, etc.) and the money that comes is only a by-product.If you hate what you are doing and rely on the money you earn to make you happy by buying stuff, then I think that you are living a life no better than a prostitute.
p.s - I got this in my mail recently. Never heard of him before this. I checked out his website & other related articles. Everyone of them spoke positvely about him. He makes a lot of sense & whats more, all his fundas sound simple enough to follow.
What say???????????????????
For more information on Adam Khoo, click here