Thursday, March 29, 2007


There are some moments in life when you find yourself in such an embarrassing situation without your own fault.  Following is one:


In the summer of 1999, I felt like a high-achiever: admission at IIM L – gave up scholarships in the US for an Indian dream education and the likes.  Well, if there was anyone ready to listen to my IIM admission news, I was more than willing to tell them about it.  Specially to my relatives, as there was no one in my entire family who had come even remotely close to an IIM forget getting in.


I visited my aunt’s house one day and my aunt’s mother-in-law wad there.  She was an eighty year old woman who was very smart, but belonged to the past.  I should have had better sense, but vanity dominated my thought and the moment she asked me what my future plans were – I was very eager to tell her that I was going to an IIM.  She looked at me very sympathetically and said, “Girish, well you don’t have to feel bad.  I have  a nephew who studied there, what did you call it -  ah yes, an ITI, and he now owns an electric shop.  It will be ok”.  I was speechless. Never did I ever tell anyone older than 45 that I studied at an IIM.



Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Marriage as discovery!

A number of Americans have asked me if mine was an arranged marriage. I smile and tell them "sort of". They get curious and then the usual explanations follow! To those who know me personally - well you know the story.

For those who don't, well to keep a long story short - boy meets girl, boy has butterflies, boy asks girl, girl asks parents, parents say it is early, boy-girl grow up, bog-girl ask again, parents agree, boy-girl happy!

However, the truth about marriage, as I have figured, is that it is no different from digging through data. A process of discovery. You think you know how the world works, you develop a preliminary mental model, you look for real world data, you discover new things and then you develop explanations. Well, it is not really like hypothesis testing, but a process of discovery, the " Aha! I get it now" thing. it may be data fudging, but it is worth it.

Marriages are not made in heaven. They are made here on earth. They are built over time - love or arranged. Marriage provides a constrained framework for discovery. Arranged marriages come with a framework that is given, while love marriages try to build that framework.

Well for now, as I am the one getting a PhD I figured I can give some free gyan (knowledge)!

What Am I?

This post is about how I made a fool of myself at a pub a few years ago. I had gone out with a few of my PhD colleagues, after one of them had finished writing her PhD qualifiers. Her husband had also accompanied us and after a few good drinks, we started chatting (or rather blabbering) about a lot of things. He is pretty open about his political affiliations and obviously, he was a Democrat - who else will you find in a university town:). Suddenly, he said, and I quote, "Girish, what can I say about myself - I am a blue man in a red state". He was using the colors to refer to the fact that our county in pennsylvania was largely republican (red) and often he finds himself a a loner, being a democrat (blue).

Me, being an idiot (drunk), could not figure out that he was referring to the political affiliation, had no clue what he said and wanting to be a smart aleck said, and I quote, "Hal, I am a brown man in a white state - can you beat that?"

P.S: I am not very sure if the others figured out if I had or had not figured out the context of Hal's comment. They were all too drunk to even remember :)

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Pic of my toy!

I am resorting to some more shameless exhibition of materialistic wealth. But, well what the heck .. it is our brand new red corvette! So, I decided I will share the pics with you anyways :)
If any reader is lucky . they might get a ride one day!