Sunday, October 12, 2014

Canara Bank to be Konk-Free by 2030

The 2012 Annual Demographics Survey of Canara Bank was released today. The report confirmed the worst - the number of Konkani-speaking employees declined by 12% from last year. At this rate, the report claimed, Canara Bank will be devoid of Konkanis by 2030.

We met with noted Konkani conservationist and leader of the "Canara Bank is Konkani Bank" campaign, Mr MP Shenoy to discuss this dire situation.

Interviewer: Mr Shenoy, thank you for talking to us. You have been with Canara Bank for more than 25 years. Can you tell us what has changed in that time?

Shenoy: The olden times were golden times. Canara Bank used to be full of Konkanis then. When I joined, my manager was a Pai, the head clerk was a Nayak and the cashier was a Bhandarkar. There was no fancy entrance exam or interview - the manager just asked me a few questions in Konkani about distant relatives in Mangalore. We used to make fun of the customers in Konkani - right on their face.

Interviewer: When did it change?

Shenoy: With Indira Gandhi's nationalization. Suddenly we were supposed to hire non-Konkanis and write exams! What nonsense! Pais and Nayaks were replaced with Kumars and Guptas. No longer could we make snide remarks about customers. No longer could we share daLithoy and upkari! It all went downhill from there.

Interviewer: Isn't it good? Hiring people based on competency rather than language?

Shenoy: No. Canara Bank is Konkani Bank. If you want fast efficient service, there are other banks out there. Canara Bank was founded to give Konkani people jobs, not to help the populace.

Interviewer: What steps do you want the Government to take to fix this problem?

Shenoy: We want the government to declare "Konkani Canara Bank Employee" as an endangered species. We also want 50% quota to be reserved for Konkanis.

Interviewer: The other problem you have is that Konkani youth are not applying to Bank jobs anymore. How do you plan to address it?

Shenoy: It is all software industry's fault. They have seduced the gullible youth with their high salaries and glamorous lifestyles. Our youngsters have forgotten our traditions and cultures. The government must ban Konkani speakers from any engineering degree. That way, they will do BCom and have Canara Bank as the only option.

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Cricket Match Results For The Next Five Years Leaked

The whistle blowing organization Wikileaks today released a cache of documents that were allegedly obtained from the International Cricket Council (ICC). Among the documents was one which listed the results of all international Cricket matches for the time period 2014-2019. The document listed what team would win, by how many runs and with individual scores.

Wikileaks spokesman Julian Assange said that he was surprised by the revelation. "We knew some Cricket matches were rigged, but we were shocked by the extent of it. After this leak, we know for sure that all matches are rigged to have a predetermined outcome. It's all carefully planned well in advance."

An ICC official, who requested to be anonymous, confirmed the document's veracity. "Cricket matches are a serious matter. We cannot leave the result to chance. We carefully analyze all factors and decide which team needs to win." He mentioned that planning 5 years in advance allows them to be fair to all countries. "Our calculations suggest that we need Zimbabwe to win one match every 3.5 years. We make sure that happens."

Fan reaction has been mixed. Kyle Richardson from Trinidad was ecstatic that West Indies will win the 2015 World Cup. "This is excellent news, man! I didn't think our team had it in them to go all the way. This is the biggest upset in the history of World Cups." Kyle was unsure before whether to buy tickets to Australia, but now that he knows his team will win, he will book it right away.

Indian fan Chetan S was disappointed that India will lose to Pakistan in the Pepsi Cup final in  June 2017. "It will be tense match, but India will lose some quick wickets in the 45th over." He said he will still watch the match on TV. "But I won't watch the February 2016 Test match between India and New Zealand because it will be a rain-affected draw."

Deepankar playing at the local school ground.
Cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle said he was most looking forward to see Deepankar Mehta make his debut in 2018. "Wow! Look at his first few scores - 101*, 78, 122, 33*. This kid is the next Tendulkar." Mehta is set to make his debut against Australia at the age of 18.

Bangladesh Cricket Board spokesperson Javed Ibrahim said that they were planning to appeal against what he called "blatant discrimination against Bangladesh". "How come Zimbabwe and Afghanistan win more matches than us? This is not fair. We demand more wins." ICC Secretary John Walsh replied that they would look into the matter. "It's probably too late to change the 2014-2019 results, we will try to do something in the 2019-2024 time frame."

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Kannadada Kotyadhipathi struggles to buy 30x40 site in Bangalore

When Chicklingesha won   1 Crore in the popular game show Kannadada Kotyadhipati, it was a dream come true for him. Born and raised in a small village Yandalli in Chikmagalur district to poor farmers, the grand prize was his ticket to a better life. But one year later, his dreams have all but crumbled.

Chickka with PowerStar
When 'Powerstar' Puneet Kumar asked him what he intended to do with the money, Chicklingesha didn't hesitate; He wanted to fulfill his grandmother's lifelong dream of owning a house in Bangalore. "My ajji always wanted to live in a pyaaTe." Alas, she died three years ago without ever visiting Bangalore. But Chickka, as he is known to his friends, resolved to fulfill her wish. "I will buy a bungalow in Bangalore and live with my parents and sisters there."

But now, one year since he won the prize, Chickka has no optimism left. This year has been a cruel mistress to him, teaching him the hard realities of Bangalore real estate market. His first encounter with disappointment came when he met with a real estate agent. "When I told them I wanted to buy a bungalow for   1 Crore, they laughed at me." Chickka's real estate agent told him to aim for a more realistic goal "A budget of   1 Crore puts him in the Low Income Group. The best he can afford is a 2BHK flat in Bokkasandra".

Undeterred, Chickka continued to look for sites. "One real-estate agent told me about a site on Hosur Road for 93 Lakhs. Turned out that the site was in Hosur." He also got swindled by a man who claimed to know
This 10x15 hut in Adugodi was recenly sold for  ₹ 1.13 crores
the BDA chairman "I gave him a bribe of  ₹ 4 Lakhs, but he disappeared with the money." After a year of struggles Chickka has given up. "A Crore has no value in Bangalore. Its all due to the software engineers and maarvaadis." He now plans to build a house and open a restaurant in Yandalli.

He partly blames Kannadada Kotyadhipati for getting his hopes up. "They should make the show to be Kannadada Site-yadhipati, because 1 Crore buys nothing in Bangalore. The grand prize should be a site in Bangalore."

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Flaw in Pythagoras Theorem: All of Math is Wrong

The International Mathematics Association issued a statement today stating that a flaw has been found in the proof of the Pythagoras theorem. Since the theorem was a fundamental pillar on which all of math was based on, the statement cautioned against using any math until a different proof was found. The statement urged people to remain calm and not give in to fear and panic.

The flaw was discovered by Satish K. of 7th Std 'C' Section, a student at the Rajajinagar Parent's Association School in Bangalore, India. "The first time I saw the proof in the textbook, I knew something was wrong. The book said AB = CD while clearly it was AC = BD".

Leading mathematician Terrence Tao of UCLA admitted that he was surprised no one found the obvious flaw till now. "No one in 2500 years bothered to check the proof. Pythagoras - he was a legend, and everyone sort-of took his word for it". Tao praised the diligence of Satish, and assured that he would be given a Fields medal.

Panic on the streets

The announcement triggered a worldwide panic as people began to realize how much math they used in everyday life. Vegetable vendor Krishnappa had to take the drastic step of selling only one vegetable at a time. "I only give one customer one potato or one tomato. Any more would involve addition, which I don't trust". Gowramma, a housewife, was crying because she didn't know how many children she had. "I used to have two kids, and I just had a daughter. But is two plus one three? Maybe it is seven. Who knows?"

Mathematicians beaten by Angry mob

Events took an ugly turn when activists of the Association of People Who Failed in II PUC Maths, a non-profit organization, broke into the math department of Bangalore University and began to beat up the lecturers there. "It is their fault we are in this mess. Justice must be meted". Police rushed to the scene but were unable to save some of the lecturers. "We don't know how many died, because we are afraid to count. "

Compensation for anyone injured by math

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah announced a sum of Rs 1 lakh to anyone who was affected by maths. "We offer our deepest condolences to those affected by this tragedy." The opposition however condemned this act as inadequate. "What good is money to a victim of maths?".

Stock Trading Suspended

All major stock exchanges stopped trading after the announcement was made. A spokesperson for the NYSE stated that they were reviewing whether they used any math in their trading algorithms. The Bombay Stock Exchange however remained open citing the fact that Indian investors relied more on blind luck rather than any logic, and thus were unaffected.

Sonu Niigaam to change his name back

Popular singer Sonu Niigaam changed his name back to Sonu Nigam after the incident. In spite of his numerologist assuring him that no math was involved, Sonu wasn't convinced. "I went to school. I remember us learning numbers in maths. How can you trust numbers?"


Monday, May 19, 2014

Famous Five 2014

"Ah! Anne made it just in time. This storm is getting rough, they will close the bridge any time now", George said as she got up to open the door.

Julian moved closer to the window. He watched a blonde in a mini-skirt and high heels get out of the car - was that really Anne? He remembered reading about her modeling career, but he had trouble imagining timid plain old Anne as the same woman in front of him.

He would be meeting the old gang after almost two decades - those friends who had meant so much to him in his childhood had drifted apart as they had grown older. It was George who had called for a reunion, an invitation which Julian had quickly accepted.

"Julian, sweetheart" Anne kissed him on the cheek "You look good for a cripple". Julian laughed, moving his wheelchair closer to the fire. "You don't look so bad yourself" he quipped.

"Hello Julian and ... wow, is that you Anne?" Julian turned around to find Dick lounging around. Dick looked bad - unshaven, with red blood shot eyes and a faint scent of Whiskey in his breath. Dick looked like he just came out of prison, which given his history was more than likely.

George joined in from the Kitchen. "Anne, Dick - make yourself at home." George was ... well, George. She was the only one who hadn't changed much, Julian thought, though she was definitely mellower. She had found a fair amount of success writing books and making documentaries. "Dad's sleeping upstairs." Quentin Kirrin, the acclaimed scientist was frail, almost 90 years old, but still pottered around with his inventions.

The evening started awkwardly as everyone tried to make small talk, but the conversation got easier as the evening wore on. Over dinner, the gang reminisced about the various escapades they had gotten into. It wasn't until George exclaimed that she had to give her dad medicines at 11:00 pm did anyone notice how long they had been talking.

George came down after a few minutes and showed everyone their bed rooms. "Hey, can you put me next to Anne?", Dick asked. "Way out of your league, dude", George muttered, but nonetheless gave him the room next to her.

What do you want to happen next?

Thursday, May 15, 2014

GRR Martin starts Kickstarter campaign to save Arya Stark

George RR Martin, the author of the popular fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire, today launched a campaign on the crowd-funding website Kickstarter. If the campaign raises $2 million, Martin pledged to not kill Arya Stark, one of the most beloved characters in the series.

Martin released a heavily redacted draft of Arya's fate from the next book of the series, The Winds of Winter. While most of the text is obscured,  what's visible confirmed that Arya would die in a brutal and agonizing manner. "Millions of fans will have their hopes dashed in the most gut-wrenching manner", Martin chuckled, "It'll be another Red Wedding", referring to the infamous event in A Storm of Swords which shocked fans worldwide. "But this time, you can prevent it from happening".

Martin justified the $2 million goal by saying that he would need to rewrite a lot if he saved Arya Stark. "The whole plot depends on Arya's murder. If she doesn't die, I have to throw away all what I've written." Martin also said that donating would show that the fans are serious about Arya. "Anyone can claim to be a fan of Arya Stark, but are they willing to part with their hard earned money for her?"

Maise Williams, who plays Arya in HBO's adaption Game of Thrones, was one of the first to donate. "I read the draft and cried the whole night. I donated $10,000 so that I don't have to act that scene in the show."

While many authors are praising Martin's innovative approach, some are saying that it sets a bad precedent. "This may start a trend for authors to auction the fates of popular characters for money. You might see JK Rowling bring back Sirius Black or Stephanie Meyer killing Bella Swan." lamented author Neil Gaiman.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

NSA finds lost picture of grandma

When a house fire destroyed Lloyd Webster's home years ago, he lost the photo album which contained the only pictures of his grand mother Harriet Jane Tremble. For years he believed that he would never see his grandmother's face again. But when Edward Snowden revealed the details of the PRISM program, Lloyd felt a glimmer of hope. With little expectation, he wrote to the Director of NSA requesting a picture of his grandmother. To his pleasant surprise, he got a reply.

"When we got his request, we were a little surprised, but glad to help", Jack Reacher, PR spokesperson for the NSA told the press. "Luckily for Mr Webster, his grandmother once attended a communist rally in 1953, and had been under surveillance ever since. Once you get on the list, you stay there forever." joked Mr Reacher. The NSA then sent Mr. Webster an album full of photos agents had taken of her over the years. "It did help that Mrs Tremble was an attractive lady, the agents took many photographs of her".

Not all photos released

"We had a lot more than we sent them". Reacher said that officials at the NSA went through all the photos to remove any embarrassing ones. "Harriet was quite the player back in her youth. There is no point in making the family uncomfortable by sending them photos of their grandmother in a bikini, or tell them about that affair she had with an Italian sailor in 1962".

Commercialization

Reacher said that the NSA was in talks with Silicon Valley to monetize the vast amount of information they had collected. "Most of the information we have is useless for catching terrorists. It's just sitting there, eating up space. This episode gave us an idea, why not monetize it? There is a great demand for photos and personal information, especially of dead people."

Today, Lloyd hangs a photo of his grandmother in his living room. "All thanks to NSA", he chirped happily.