G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

W H Auden: "But in my arms till break of day / Let the living creature lie. / Mortal, guilty, but to me/ The entirely beautiful."

Will Self: “To attempt to write seriously is always, I feel, to fail – the disjunction between my beautifully sonorous, accurate and painfully affecting mental content, and the leaden, halting sentences on the page always seems a dreadful falling short. It is this failure – a ceaseless threnody keening through the writing mind – that dominates my working life, just as an overweening sense of not having loved with enough depth or recklessness or tenderness dominates my personal one.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Art Spiegelman: "You know words in a way are hitting you on the left side of your brain, music and visual arts hit on the right side of the brain, so the idea is to pummel you, to send you from left brain to right brain and back until you're as unbalanced as I am."

विलास सारंग: "संदर्भ कुठलेही असोत, संस्कृत, इंग्रजी, बुद्धिवादी, तांत्रिक, इतिहासाचे, खगोलशास्त्राचे, आधुनिक पदार्थविज्ञानाचे, शिवकालीन व पेशवाईतील बखरीचे, अगणित ज्ञानक्षेत्रांचे, अशा वैविध्यपूर्ण ज्ञानावर लेखन- विशेषत: कवितालेखन- उभं राहत."

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The Office [Indian]

Over last several months, I have been following TV serial “The Office [American]” on Star World. The dominant theme there is – Sex.

India is no different. See a related earlier post here.

At a multinational IT company where I worked in India, there always was gossip in the air about who was sleeping with whom. Almost always male concerned was higher ranked than female.

I hope things have changed and they now have Michael Scott- Jan Levinson kind of pairs.

Times of India reported on January 30, 2008:

“…If a new survey by staffing company TeamLease Services is to be believed, India Inc has made a brazen admission about being more open to office romances.

The ‘Romance at Workplace' survey, which covered 402 respondents across seven cities, reveals that what was a taboo earlier is now acceptable. Nearly 34% of working executives feel that it is alright to have an affair with a married colleague. Shocking as it may sound, 44% believe that an office romance is a legitimate means of climbing up corporate ladder. Another 20% believe that an office romance is fair way of getting “sex for fun”. Yet others feel that it is a good way to escape from miserable marital lives.

If you feel this is a new economy-young-employee profile phenomenon, think again. The survey looked at employees of all age groups in companies in BPO, retail, pharma, and manufacturing. Says Surabhi Mathur, GM, TeamLease, “The forces at play here are enhanced intimacy in work environment, longer hours, extensive team play and a shift from individual to group tasks.”

Nearly 56% of the respondents in the survey felt that “romantic liaisons at workplaces impact the quality and speed of work”. But in the same breath, 56% also said that the organization shouldn't interfere in such affairs.

So, what should companies do because, after all, they ought not to be probing into the private lives of employees? But at the same time, there is an ethical issue at play here: when the romance affects efficiency and breeds discrimination. Most companies that TOI contacted, refused to talk about it deeming it as a sensitive issue…”


Artist: Peter Arno The New Yorker 29 March 1947