Besides these two, I also have Email, Uncle Google,  two Resident Geeks and Kindle to get through my days.

Oddly enough, because I am better versed in handling these modern supports, I am the support and go-to person, for some friends who are not as blessed as I am, with Resident Geeks.

There are some who use me to fact check ‘forwards’ received by them. This is usually a terse “True?” either followed or preceded by the forward message, usually controversial or out of the ordinary. I inevitably oblige and find out the veracity about the message as if untrue, further forwarding can land people in trouble.

There are others who use me as their online buying agent, usually for books after some online research as well but, on the odd occasion, for other things from say Amazon or other online merchants. I haven’t yet fixed an Agency Commission but, am seriously considering doing so.

And finally, there are a couple of friends who use me as the conduit for making donations as they do not want their identities to be known to the recipients lest they be harassed for further donations. I happily oblige and am now considered to be a serious donor for some very deserving causes.

So, my supports have enabled me to become a support for others.

What about you dear reader? Are you satisfied with just being supported or, are you a support too?

Picker Upper.

Some readers have commented on my blog post Precious Gifts about another very useful gadget that they use to pick things up from the floor without bending down.

I too have one which however was not gifted to me. I had bought it when some years ago I had pulled a back muscle and had difficulty bending down while I was recovering.

It just hangs on a hook behind my chest of drawers as I don’t use it anymore. I call it my “picker upper”!  I don’t know what else to call it.

Can someone tell me the correct name for it?


A recent corporate fiasco highlights the importance of proper communication in Management. Here is an article in the BBC that explains what happened. This matter received a lot of attention in India as the new CEO is a person of Indian origin and that alone raised many eyebrows.

In my working life, I have had to dismiss employees or take other unpleasant actions and I have faced many agonising moments on deciding quite how to communicate my decision. It never was easy and I have always felt in retrospect, that I could have handled it differently.

I am glad that I don’t have to any more but, I can sympathise with others who have to.

On a lighter note, here is a cartoon that resonates with me. Apart from the humour, the language is quite impressive. Don’t you think so?

New Word “friggatriskaidekaphobia”

I had known that fear of the number 13 is called triskaidekaphobia and today, I learnt that fear of Friday the 13th is called friggatriskaidekaphobia.

The pleasure of learning this new word is all the more enjoyable for having learnt it from an article written by a favourite author of mine Bibek Debroy whose magnum opus, a ten set volume of The Mahabharatha is among my cherished collection of books.

BD’s full article, a very readable one can be found here.

I am not superstitious and do not suffer from either triskaideskaphobia or friggatriskaidekaphobia. It however is a matter of fact that my wife died on a Friday the thirteenth.

Have you experienced any such incidents in your life?


This is called kooja in Tamil and Phirkicha Tambya in Marathi. It is a vessel with a screw on cap which used to be store and carry drinking water.

Pre-filled plastic bottles have now replaced these but, during my childhood this was seen during all train and bus journeys.

The following image is a caricature of an Indian politician with two yes men behind him.
Yes men are till today called Koojas in Tamil Nadu as they used to carry water for their bosses in such vessels.

In Hindi and other North Indian languages, they are called chamchas the original word still used in regular conversations means a spoon.

Have you ever been a kooja/chamcha or had one? I have both.

Fun With Language 2.

Another exchange in WhatsApp yesterday. This time in a group page of classmates.

BN: You can speak English fluently. Right?

Try this small para.

*A real mathematician can mathematically mathematise mathematics in a mathematical mathematiculation. So if a mathematician can mathematise mathematics in a mathematical mathematiculation, why can’t you mathematically mathematise mathematics in a mathematical mathematiculation like the mathematician who mathematically mathematises mathematics in a mathematical mathematiculation?*🍀😝🤣👍🏻

DS: This can drive any one mad..

Me: BN is DS.

PP: What do you mean? There is no comparison between the two.

DS: Yes Ramana how did you compare? Please explain to understand.

Me: Typo. My English! Please add a comma after ‘BN is’.

DS: Oh, Ramana I have understood what you meant but, BN is not mad. He wants others to be mad. Right BN?

Me: Yes DS. BN drives others mad too.

And the gentleman that BN is, he is yet to respond.