General ravings, Verse perverse

A Dreamy Climate Conference

The hall is quiet; the chilled air heavy with the heady scents

Of fetching young Facilitators, murmuring spells of somnolence

Overlaid with aromas of spice and season, from the buffet hall thence

Tables laden, for the ravening audience to satiate every primal sense

 

Alas! Ere long the howling winds of the Climate Conference

Shall disperse this glorious cocktail of fragrance

Shredding sleep; satori; sanity; blessed silence

With speeches high in pretence, long in sentence

 

But now an electric tension engulfs the conclave

Murmurs ascend, subside…a soft, sonorous sine-wave

Pulsating in the silence…till, bathed in TV cameras’ glare

The simpering Chief Guest gallops in, glistening from shoes to hair

 

A beauteous Anchor welcomes all, the ceremonial lamp is lit

A few giggles and chuckles echo as the mikes throw a fit

But fade away as the Organizer takes his place at the podium

And scowls, his eyes gentle as cyanide of sodium

 

As he launches into his interminable speech

In my disintegrating mind I frantically beseech

Divinity, to help me in this hour of need so deep

And preserve me from sliding off  into sleep

 

O, have mercy on me, Great God of Power Points pointless!

Save me from those, whose slides neither enlighten nor impress

With Sacrifice of Sacred Gobbledygook, I pray that Thou bless

Me with patience, bladder control, and wakefulness!

 

The speakers drone on through hours torturous

The audience’s breathing grows ever more stertorous

As my mind is rendered number, ever dumber

I slump in my seat, drift into peaceful slumber

 

Presently, in dream I float above a World of Emissions

And behold therein most extraordinary visions

Now Roaches rule, with Ant armies legion

And Adaptation is the new State Religion

 

The few humans I can see, all in chain-gangs toil

To grow bugs  for their Lords, from the saline soil

“Tis Dharma, “  a passing Wasp hums; “for you humans did spoil

Our lovely Earth, with your greed for coal and oil…”

 

I’m overcome with fear as the Wasp draws near

And grasps me in her jaws, her intentions clear

She dives and deposits me in a field of bugs

The humans draw near… all look like slugs!

 

I yell in terror, and lurch to my feet

Fall headlong, and feel coarse fur with my teeth

‘Tis the carpet I chew; I’m back in the hall

On my knees; when I dropped off,  I cannot recall

 

I resume my seat, embarrassed at my fall

Look around…and realize no-one’s noticed me at all

Because the entire assembly is in Morpheus’ thrall

Even the Panel Members droop, loll and sprawl

Potshots, Verse perverse

Understanding the Budget: An A,B,C Primer for Rahul Gandhi-ji

Whether the ‘Interim Budget’ presented by acting Finance Minister Piyush Goyal was actually interim or not is immaterial – as immaterial as the benefits you and I will receive from the Budget.

Far more tangible was the utter bewilderment on the face of Congress President Rahul Gandhi during Goyal’s speech. Clearly, the poor man was quite flummoxed by the barrage of economic spiel, financial terms and affiliated data Goyal dished out, tera-flop by tera-sop.

Long on speech, longer in face

Following the budget speech, we staggered up to the terrace and espied a piece of paper gently floating in from the general direction of Parliament Street. Grabbing it and smoothing it out, we discovered it to be a page torn from a standard-issue Lok Sabha jotting-pad. The page was filled with writing, starting with a four-line piece of doggerel!

We transcribe below, O faithful reader, the lines from this solitary page. We can only guess at the identity of the author – perhaps a cynical Congress or CPI(M) Member whose heart is yet in the Right, or even Left, place?

[QUOTE]

Rahul-ji’s angst and anguish doth grow and grow

With Goyal’s every buzz-word, every cackle and crow

Rahul-ji’s frown deepens; his face grows longer – little wonder

‘Tis clear he can’t follow a word, however hard he doth ponder

With general elections a couple of months away, and with strong indications that our Mahagathbandhan might well form the next government with Rahul-ji as prime minister, surely we must all try and help Rahul-ji understand some common terms used in connection with the budget?

Here is a small glossary to get Rahul-ji started:

 Appropriation Bill: This is a bill of receipt, or challan, given to you by team from Income Tax Department, Enforcement Directorate or CBI after they raid your home and/or office and appropriate assets disproportionate to your known sources of income. [Always remember: when raided,  insist on Appropriation Bill].

Balance of payments: Denotes the difference in total value between various payments into and out of India over a certain period of time on account of kickbacks on defense equipment, hawala transactions and so on, through legally disapproved channels such as Channel Island companies.

 Fiscal policy: Derives from the vision of  Congress fore-fathers, fore-mothers and fore-others, of an India where our youth – young and old alike – are strong and muscular, that is, fiscally fit. Fiscal fitness is especially important during election campaigning. Today BJP makes tall promises to set up infrastructure for fiscal fitness such as gyms, sports stadiums and so on. In practice, however, these promises are never kept and the money allocated disappears without trace in ghotalas and goshalas, leading to a weak fiscal condition in people known as fiscal deficit.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP): Although it might sound gross or unpleasant, GDP is a vital measure of the overall garbage output from the entire domestic or household sector in India.  As household prosperity increases, so too does household consumption of junk food and junk goods, and therefore of household garbage output. This is famous Garbage In = Garbage Out principle. Hence, high GDP growth is good because it means India’s economy is growing.

Inflation: Describes the tendency of the BJP government to make exaggerated claims about everything, including the size of Narendra Modi’s chest.  Affiliated terms are deflation and recession, manifest in shrinking chests of BJP members upon losing in successive state assembly elections.

Plan and Non-Plan Expenditure: Plan expenditure is what the government tells the public it wants to spend. Non-plan expenditure is what government has to spend, but doesn’t tell the public it has to spend, in order to spend what it tells the public it wants to spend as plan expenditure. [For more simple explanation, please consult Mani Shankar Aiyar-ji and/or Shashi Tharoor-ji]

 Public account: Refers to the public admission made by a high-level politician or government servant who is accused of swindling public money, during a court hearing that is open to public. When the hearing takes place in Supreme Court or Delhi High Court, the public admission is known as capital account.

[UNQUOTE…END OF PAGE]

P.S.:  We offer a reward of Rs 10,000 in non-demonetized notes to anybody who can trace the remaining pages of this invaluable document.

 

Musings, Verse perverse

Pralayam dream

Pralayam dream

[Inspired by the Beatles’ ‘A day in the life’ – with apologies to their estate, and to my gentle readers. Please click here to listen to the original song]

I read the news today, oh boy
About a glitzy man who made front page
And though the news was rather sad
Well I just had to laugh
I saw the photograph…

He slew six mild folk with his car
Too high to notice that the lights had changed
A crowd of people stood and stared
They’d seen his face before
Nobody was really sure if he’d done wrong
Their Star he was…

I saw a film today, oh boy
The Indian Army had just won the war
A crowd of people turned away
But I just had to look
‘N liked it on Facebook
I’d love to burn ‘n nuke it all…

Woke up, fell out of bed
Swigged black tea to clear my head
Checked WhatsApp, chewed some stale old crap,
Looking up I noticed I was late
Checked my Tweets, tripped on the mat
Made the bus in seconds flat
Found my way upstairs and had a smoke
Somebody spoke and I went into a dream

I read the news today, oh boy
Ten thousand died in riots; ten million cheered

And though the dead were large and small

They had to count them all…
Now they know how many dead it takes to fill our Malls ‘n Prayer Halls
I’d love to burn ‘n nuke it all…

 

Musings, Verse perverse

Dark speculations on RFPs, Log Frames, and other profanities

[Dedicated to all fellow-spinmeisters in the Development World]

 

The more one delves into the Project Cycle

The stronger its leek-like reek; as palatable

As being ensconced in a warm, softly lit room

Sippin’ spiced spirits while gazing out at the chilly gloom

And shedding copious tears for the shivering poor without

E’en while raising crystal glass to quivering snout…

Joyously do we journey through forests of Problem Trees

Skinny-dip in Expertise Pools, as we compute our Consultancy Fees

From Global Conferences to Regional Workshops we flit, by jet

To meet, in every Core Committee and Advisory Group, those we just met

Globetrotting arachnids, spinning a web of silken jargon and hype

In which to ensnare, and feed on, suckers of every type

We’ve fabricated a Cage of Fabrications, a Programmatic Framework

In which we fatten ourselves all the more, on those who understand less

Creativity drowned, in a swamp of glutinous verbosity

Spontaneity lost, in Missions of pompous piety

Where did we start this? Why did we at all?

When did we start this slide? Last Tuesday, or last year’s Fall?

It makes no difference: it doesn’t matter at all

It’s enough for us, great Omar’s words to recall…

What without thinking, hither hurries whence?

And, mindlessly, whither hurries hence?

Oh! Another, another cup to drown

The memory of this impertinence!”

All we need do is keep churning out the gobbledygook

By the petabyte and ppt; throwing in a report or book

Outcomes and Outputs, Short-Term Extensions

Mid-Term Reviews, Course Corrections

Just fabricate those Indicators, by hook or by crook

And if some dare raise questions—cock them a snook!

 

Potshots, Verse perverse

Rahul Gandhi’s Farewell Song

[Sing to the tune ofLeaving on a jet plane’ – with apologies to the estates of John Denver and Peter, Paul and Mary; click here to hear the original song]

Rahul's tweet
With a tweet little tweet on 20th June 2016, Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi announced his departure on a ‘short visit’

All my bags are packed
I’m ready to go
Congress toadies weep outside my door
It’s time to say, Ciao India – Good luck!  Goodbye!

For the Lok Sabha session
Will soon be on
Modi’s gang is waitin’
To take me on
But they won’t find me! Let them try
Let them cry…

Rahul pines on vacation
Ask not for whom Rahul pines/ He pines for you and me

They’ll miss me by miles, you’ll see
No one knows where I’m gonna be
I’ll be having a blast, that’s for sure!

‘Cause I’m leavin’ on a jet plane
Doin’ my disappearing act again
Oh Ciao my Congress! It’s such a joy to go

There are so many places I’ve found

To bask in, revel in, laze around
But I tell you now, although they bring a zing
Ev’ry place I go, I’ll think of you
Ev’ry song I sing, I’ll sing for you
When I come back, I’ll bring you a little bling

So miss me, Storm the Well for me
Tell me that you’ll Walk Out for me
Extol me like you’ll never let me go

‘Cause I’m leavin’ on a jet plane
Doin’ my disappearing act again
Oh Ciao India! it’s such a joy to go…

[Refrain]

 

 

 

 

Musings, Verse perverse

Cosmic gurgle

Does your mind reel when endless ‘holy’ wars are fought

By believers in gods or prophets, against those who believe not?

When some deem cows ‘holy’, and so not fit to eat

And others deem pigs unholy, and pork a sinful meat?

Diminishing Divinity to what should or should not

Go into your cooking pot?

 

Surely, the One manifests, in love, compassion, joy, grace

In Nature’s harmony, awesome infinite Space

In children’s innocence, amour’s sublime passion

In the grandeur of cosmic balance, stasis in action

This Truth dwells within very being, in every place

In the baby’s delighted gurgle, the saint’s serene face

 

Behold! In that religious kook’s tooth – a calcium atom

That recently passed through an earthworm’s bottom…

‘Fore that, for eons this atom danced and ranged

Among a million bodies, across the planet – itself unchanged

A Truth as wondrous, as certain, as Spring’s softening to Autumn

A Secret, perhaps…yet one a child can easily fathom!

 

And look! There, in that crow’s eagle eye, sparkles a photon

That a decade ago sped past distant Procyon

Borne Earthwards a-straddle a cosmic ray

Crow blinks…and now the photon’s away

‘Twill streak by Neptune later today, heading to Orion

Tiny Space-Time voyager: Eternal, Unborn

 

In hills and rills, stones and bones, leaves and hide

In crystals and beings, inside and outside

Behold energy- turned-matter, bits of the Divine

Batter to bake the Cosmic Cake—and brew the Wine!

Ever changing yet eternal, rhythmic as the tide

Awakening the quark, the neutrino, the very Universe wide

 

In you today, in me tomorrow

Untouched by joy, passion, pain, sorrow

Ecstatic Players, in the Theatre of Great Allah

Dancing in abandon, Great Shiva’s Tandava

Star-Children, God’s children are we all, in Creation’s ebb and flow

Oh listen to the music and dance! Let’s lead, let’s follow

 

And  if the mind reels when, in the name of Divinity

Humans forsake humanity for murderous insanity

Despair not! With the Flame of Reason, lighten thy heart, thy ethos…

Rekindle the Spark; discern Order in the Sea of Chaos

And dance as your Oneness with the One illumines Infinity

And smile at the echo of the Cosmic Chuckle in the Halls of Eternity