My Top 15 Favorite Blog Posts of 2011

I have written many articles and poems in this year and it was a wonderful experience being able to write regularly all through the year. What’s more satisfying is that how well some of my articles have been received and shared over the internet! As 2011 draws to an end, I am writing this post to highlight my favorite 15 posts which I wrote in the year 2011.

1. 10 Things I am glad I had done (or do) in my life

I wrote this post in the beginning of the year on Jan 20, and has remained my favorite ever since. I often read this post again and again to measure myself against the 10 points I wrote in this article.

2. Only If You Knew

What if you are a poor and illiterate child who is exploited by the world around you and have no idea how to fight it? What do you say to the normal human being going about his life chasing his dreams and making his mark in the world? This poem is imagined from this little poor child to the average middle class Indian.

3. What is Jan Lokpal Bill?

I wrote this post before most of the country has heard of the Jan Lokpal Bill or Anna Hazare, on 12 March 2011. It was a chance encounter with IAC during the Dandi March 2 in Bangalore that I came to know about it, and wrote an article on it. That article later got widely popular as Anna Hazare fever caught on to the whole nation. See the number of shares (2000+) and the number of comments (200+) this article has got.

4. Why God Made Mothers?

Will not say much about it, just that I wrote this poem as a tribute to every mother and her undying love for her kid.

5. How letting go of SaleRaja could be one of my best decisions ever?

Very often we put in a lot of effort in something only to see it fail or not work out as expected. I wrote this post recalling a similar experience which I had with SaleRaja and how difficult was it for me for it to let go. But once I made the decision, there were so many things waiting for me which I could not see earlier. Read this post to realize that sometimes you have to let go of the life you have planned for yourself to get what life has planned for us.

6. What I learned when Deepali said “Theek Theek Laga Lo” 🙂

In April, I remembered an old incident which happened when I was in InfoEdge in Noida and wrote a post about it. It highlights the importance of having fun at the workplace and how we can do much more productive work in a fun environment rather than being serious all day.

7. Messenger of Hope

As the whole country got behing Anna Hazare during his fast unto death in April, I wrote this poem highlighting how Anna has come as our Messenger of Hope.

8. Never sacrifice happiness for achievement

An article I wrote in May highlighting the importance of enjoying and cherishing every minute of the journey while we go toward our destination. It is about how we should start living in the NOW and enjoy whatever we are doing.

Wishing a very Happy New Year 2012 to all of you

Wishing a very Happy New Year 2012 to all of you

9. Don’t allow yourself to use the word “tired”

I wrote this post stressing on the importance of language and the words we use in our daily conversations. And one of the quickest ways to improve your way of being is to change the words you use, to others and to yourself too.

10. 5 Benefits of Early Morning Exercise You Don’t Know

We all know the benefits of early morning exercise to our health. But I wrote this post to highlight some other benefits from getting up early and exercising. Like how it is a personal victory to start your day, how it gives us free time later in the day and keeps us stress free and feeling confident which eventually impacts every other area of our life too.

11. Why Will I Not Trade Any Year of My Career for even a MIT / Harvard Degree?

One of my favorite posts, I wrote this one taking a look back at 6 years of my professional career. I take a look at a few things which didn’t span out as expected, and how I am glad for those as I found new directions and ways to walk on at those unforeseen turns. I also highlight how much I have changed in the last 6 years, yet remaining the same person at the core. Must read…

12. Its Part of The Game

A poem about the fact that how everything is part of the game. That how life’s successes and failures are just two sides of the same coin and that there is no reason to be upset or dejected at the failures. Instead we must take the lessons from them and continue playing the game.

13. 7 Lessons from SaleRaja and other start-ups I have been associated with

Here are seven important points I would like to share with one and all who might be interested in starting a web based business based on my experiences. Some of the points are being passionate, prioritizing stuff, having fun while working and working with people smarter than yourself who share the same value system.

14. Why we should break the Safety Wall around us (to be Happy)

I wrote this article on my birthday. It highlights the need to get out of our comfort zone for us to be really happy and fully experience life. Most of the the times we thing being comfortable is being happy, but if we got in the world totally vulnerable to risks and still being able to dream big, we will realize what being alive and happy is really all about. Don’t just read this article, do it to believe it!

15. She is my dearest

A different poem from what I usually write, this is one of my favorite poems I wrote this year. Will not say much about it, just read it 🙂


I know I said I would give the 15 top blog posts but while I am at it, I found four more (and anyways, I am not much for rules) which I would like to share with you. So here you go with the 4 bonus posts below –


Is the Innovation ladder leaning against the right wall?

In this article I have tried to bring out the gap between the areas where all the technology driven innovation is happening and where the real need it. I have tried to  impress upon the point that “Are we innovating for solving the right problems?”

I Sent You

A poem I wrote in September about a confused young man who looks to God to answer many of his questions. And how God replies to his doubts!

How to write regularly, and get better at it in 10 easy steps

After writing so much in all of 2011, I decide to share my experience with my readers. In this post I list 10 important points I think will help anybody write regularly.

The Two Kinds of Choices and Decisions

This was a post I wrote just last month about the two kinds of choices we have to make in our life, and how both types of choices are very important. There is only one way we can move ahead in life and that is by choosing its choices, whether we make it or when life chooses a path for us.

Six Indians who will not be with us in 2012

Another year is coming to an end. As 2011 says good-bye for ever and we welcome 2012, let’s take a look at who all 2011 took with it. I can distinctly remember the passing away of some great personalities this year, who will forever be missed in the years to come. There are people from all walks of life – from art, sports, technology and bollywood who were luminaries in their respective fields but are no more with us today.

Shammi Kapoor - The Elvis Presley of India

The Elvis Presley of India

Shammi Kapoor

The original ‘yahoo‘ man, the youth icon of the 60s, Shammi Kapoor was as famous for his boyish looks and trademark dance movies as he was for his acting. Some of his most famous movies were Tumsa Nahi Dekha, Dil Deke Dekho, Professor, China Town, Junglee, Kashmir Ki Kali, and Brahmachari, among others. He was often hailed as the ‘Elvis Presley‘ of India. Later in this life, he also appeared in a lot of character roles and those were always well received. His demise has certainly left a big gap in Indian cinema.

MF Hussain

Often called India’s Picasso, he was without doubt the best artist ‘in the country‘, which is actually ironical as he spent his last years outside the country due to controversies over his paintings. While the Indian leaders called his death a ‘national loss‘, they were unable to promise him security from death threats from right wing Hindu activists. He was one of the first Indian artists to command huge respect and prices for his paintings in the international scene. His paintings were known for his understanding of the human situation, and how he portrayed the same in paint. He had received awards like Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vidhushan from the Indian government.

MAK Pataudi - Youngest Test Captain of India

Youngest Test Captain of India

MAK Pataudi

Every now and then a man dies leading to countrywide mourning of unknown magnitude. It amazed me to watch the whole country, and so many politicians, former cricketers and bollywood legends mourning his passing away recently. There are many stories about he applied his cricketing brain to use to fox the opponents as a captain and how he batted with only one eye. Noted historian and cricket writer Mukul Kesavan, writing about Pataudi said: “He wasn’t just the Nawab of Pataudi – he was a Tiger. For us it wasn’t just a name, it was an attitude”

Jagjit Singh

He was the ghazal king of India. Young or old, I can bet you have heard and cherished listening to his ghazals. He transformed the way ghazals were sung, and he brought them into the mainstream from just being a ‘niche‘ earlier. He has sung in Hindi, Punjabi, Urdu, Bengali, Sindhi, Gujarati and Nepali. His music for films like Prem Geet, Arth and Saath Saath was well known. He composed and recorded songs for over 80 albums in a career spanning over five decades.

Jagjit Singh - The Ghazal King

Jagjit Singh - The Ghazal King

Dev Anand

Just as losing the above four legends was not enough, the Evergreen Romantic Superstar of Indian Cinema Dev Anand passed away on 3rd December at the age of 88. He had millions of fans in his career which span a whopping 65 years. He was known for his youthfulness, style and good looks. He has been awarded the Padma Bhushan by the government of India and also got the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 2002. He acted in movies like Guide (his most famous), C.I.D., Kala Pani, Pocketmaar, Tere Ghar Ke Saamne, Asli Naqli, Jewel Thief, Prem Pujari, Hare Rama Hare Krishna and Banarasi Babu. He continued to make films and act in them till his death, with his last movie being Chargesheet this year itself.

Bhupen Hazarika

He was a film maker, a lyricist, a singer, a poet and a political activist, all rolled into one. His career spanned over 70 years in which he put Assamese cinema on the map and in 1992, he was awarded the Dada Saheb Phalke award. His songs often touched on important social issues and always promoted justice and empathy. People like Hazarika might no longer exist in bodily form, but their memories will forever remain with us in the form of their work, whether it is Harazika’s songs, Dev Sahab’s acting, Shammi Kapoor’s dancing to songs like Suku Suku, or the paintings of MF Hussain.

Some other luminaries who passed away this year are Steve Jobs, Dennis Ritchie, Joe Frazier, Sathya Sai Baba and Elizabeth Taylor.

World Cup 2011 Review

This was the World Cup everybody hoped for after the debacle in 2007. With India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka reaching the last four, and an Indian victory, the ICC could not have asked for a better script. This World Cup will also be remembered for a dream of a billion people getting fulfilled, and Sachin Tendulkar getting this one final jewel in his bag of crowns, which was no secret. India won the World Cup after 28 years, putting Dhoni right among the top when it comes to captaincy greats.

This World Cup will also be known for some extraordinary and unexpected performances from few players, like how Pakistan rallied behind Shahid Afridi the bowler to surprise many and reaching the semis, or how Yuvraj marked his comeback with superb all round performance which won him four man of match and the man of the series award. It was also marked by the clear end of Australian dominance in ODI cricket. England proved the most entertaining team of the tournament, losing to Ireland and then winning against South Africa, who in-fact, did a deja-vu by confirming their ‘chokers’ tag by losing to New Zealand in the quarters.

Indian team after the victory

Indian team after the victory

How my predictions fared?
I predicted India and Australia as favorites before the World Cup and India took home the trophy. However, my other predictions were not upto the mark and you can see below how they fared –

  • Most sixes in single over – I predicted two overs where all balls will be hit for sixes but this World Cup did not produce even a single such over.
  • Most sixes in an innings by a team – New Zealand hit 13 sixes in the game against Pakistan while I predicted 25.. Did the bowlers bowl too well?
  • Most sixes in an innings by a player – Ross Taylor hit 7 sixes in the above said game, while I predicted 10.
  • Most sixes by a player in tournament – Ross Taylor hit 14 sixes, the highest in the tournament while my prediction stood at 25
  • Fastest Fifty – 23 balls by Kieron Pollard v Netherlands, very close to my prediction of 20 balls
  • Fastest Century – 50 balls by Kevin O Brien of Ireland v England. This was one hell of a knock which shook England and bettered my prediction of 65 balls.
  • Highest total – 370/4 by India in the first match against Bangladesh was the highest total, and no team managing to get more than 400 as I predicted. The associate teams seems to have improved.
  • Highest Individual Score – 175 by Sehwag, again in the first game itself and the 200* by God still remain the highest score in an ODI.
  • Hat Tricks – Here I was right on the target with Lasith Malinga and Kemar Roach providing the two instances of hat-tricks in this world cup.
  • Most Wickets – Afridi and Zaheer Khan took 21 wickets each while I predicted 22-25 wickets. Afridi came from no-where and proved to be the best and most intelligent bowler on the subcontinent pitches.
  • Most Runs – Dilshan emerged the top scored with 500 runs with Sachin following behind with 482 runs. My prediction of 650 runs was way off the mark here.
  • Strike Rates with runs over 300 – Again as I predicted, Sehwag made 380 runs at a strike rate of 122 to emerge the player with the highest strike rate with more than 300 runs.

Other notable stats
Apart from the above predictions, there were some other important statistics which need a mention. They are :-

  • Highest run rate in any World Cup – This World Cup saw the average run rate of 5.03, which was the first time it has crossed 5 in all World Cup history.
  • Highest number of centuries – This World Cup saw 24 centuries which was the highest ever in any World Cup, surpassing the 21 in the 2003 World Cup.
  • Yuvraj Singh scored 362 runs and took 15 wickets, grabbing four man of the match awards, only the third player after Arvinda De Silva and Lance Klusener to do so. He was only the fourth player and second Indian after Kapil Dev to achieve the doulbe of 300 runs and ten wickets in a single WC.
  • People came out on the roads to celebrate

    People came out on the roads to celebrate

Overall, it was a world cup where spinners came into their own. They opened the bowling attacks quite regularly with every team, and also featured among the major wicket takers. All that can attributed to the slow pitches of the subcontinent aided by the fact that this was the end of a season. Pakistan and South Africa were the best bowling units in the World Cup, and India and Sri Lanka the best batting units. In the end, it was cricket that won and that is what matters.

2010 – The End of a Decade

An year has come to an end. A decade has come to an end. And what a remarkable decade that was. In the last 10 years, so much changed in the world, and specifically in India, that it is difficult to believe that was only 10 years ago. I am going to write down what all has changed in the last decade in the bullet points that follow.

When this decade started –

  • Bill Clinton was still the US President. Can’t believe it, George Bush was sworn in only in 2001
  • People used to listen music on Sony WalkMan, as there was no iPod, which was launched only in 2001
  • The Twin Towers were still standing on the New York skyline, and nobody cared about Al-Qaeda or Osama.
  • US was not at war. Now they are fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Saddam Hussein is dead.
  • Kalpana Chawla was still alive, her space shuttle Columbia exploded on re-entry in Feb 2003
  • The 2004 tsunami was yet to happen, which would wipe out hundreds of thousands of lives.
  • Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston were still together, they separated in 2005 after which Brangelina came.
  • Major cities were safe around the world. London, Bali and Madrid were bombed in the decade
  • Gay marriages were illegal even in the US, with California legalizing it in 2005 and even Indian Supreme Court passing a landmark judgement a few years ago.
  • There was no Twitter, Facebook, Wikipedia and Gmail. Need I say anything more…
  • Phones used to be like 2kg bricks. The decade saw them getting smaller to tiny, before getting big again with the advent of smartphones.
  • There was no iPhone, which Steve Jobs unveiled in 2007, ushering in a revolution in touch screen phones.
  • People still used to use desktops, before laptops took over desktop sales by a big margin in this decade.
  • Lehman Brothers, Enron, Worldcom were still functioning companies. They all filed for bankruptcy in the last decade.
  • Mumbai have not seen the train bombings and the Nov 2008 attacks, which got the attention of the whole world.
  • Michael Jackson was still alive, and not being charged with child molestation
  • India has still not done its Pokhram nuclear tests, which changed the South Asia defence scenario totally.
  • India’s growth was still not 8%.
  • I was still in Delhi, and in school. As it later happened, I was to spend 4 years in Jaipur, then 3 again in Delhi/Noida and now 2 and counting in Bangalore

I certainly must have missed some very important landmarks in the last 10 years, make sure to add them in the comments!!