Photobucket had recently changed their policy and now all the images from my 650+ blog posts are disabled. I am slowly editing them by moving my images to my own server at AWS, but it will take time. In case there is a particular old post you want to see the images of, kindly drop me a mail at mizohican@gmail.com and I'll keep that at a high priority. Thank you.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Chp 443. Flightless


A smoke filled room. Ganja. And a flightless body.

The dog runs around his master, wagging his tail excitedly, waiting for his master to throw the stuffed toy.

“Master, master, I’m hungeee!”

“Master, master, stop learning how to fly, you’re not Superman!”

“Master, master, when is Aunty Muani coming over again? I miss her smell, her touch, how she would give me treats behind your back just because you think I don’t deserve them. Are you learning how to fly to her house, hahaha!”

Sawma loves his dog. But more than that, he loves Muani, the soul mate that he was always meant to have. They met at the Mumbai Mizo Association "Chapchar Kut" function, and had been inseparable since.

Sawma had always been an introvert. Reddit, Pink Floyd, weed, those were Sawma’s best friends. And then suddenly Muani came into his life. Everything changed.

At first, Muani was against Sawma adopting a puppy.

“How can you even think of owning a pet? I have to come to your house every week to change your bed sheet. You must first learn how to look after yourself, and then only consider having pets!”

That was Muani. Always concerned. Always caring. She was in Mumbai for her UPSC coaching class. Hard working, studious and serious. Sawma on the other hand was employed at a financial firm, where life was all about performance and showing up in office on time. He was also a geek who had never missed a single ComiCon fest in Mumbai. CosPlay was his favorite. Superman was his idol and he would always dress up as the Man of Steel.

“Wish I can fly directly to your house so as to beat this maddening Mumbai rush hour traffic!” had been the line Muani would always remember. Geeky as it sounded, that was what made Muani’s knees weak. That was why she loved Sawma so much.

Until that fateful day when a local bus with a malfunctioned brake rammed into her on her way back from coaching class, killing her on the spot.

Sawma was in the middle of a meeting about quarterly performance when he got the call. A passerby had dialed the last called number from her bloodied phone.

That night, back from the morgue, Sawma entered his flat. His dog greeted him with the same excitement and enthusiasm.

“Oh you oblivious fool.”

Yet the dog jumped around him, licking the feet of the master he loved so much.

“Master, master, don’t look so down. Did you not get your appraisal again? I’m here for you, tell me what’s wrong…”

“Master, master, why are you smoking that awful smelling thing again? You know Aunty Muani hates that right?”

“Master, master, is that a new toy you bought for me? Oh boy oh boy, I love ropes!”

“Master, master, oh finally you are learning how to fly! Yay, now you can fly to Aunty Muani’s house... but take me along too puleeze?”

“Master, master, ok I will wait right here until you perfect your flying skill and come back to the ground. Good night master, I love you.”

A smoke filled room. Ganja. And a lifeless body.



Thursday, February 14, 2013

Chp 442. A Valentine’s Day Post: Love Birds



A friend of mine asked me yesterday, “So are you going to write about Valentine’s Day tomorrow on your blog again?”

The mockery was obvious.

Ever since I started blogging, I’ve been in four relationships. It may sound like a big deal to some, but remember I’ve been blogging since 2004 :P That’s like 2.6 years per relationship on an average, which I’m sure is much longer than the relationships many of you judgmental friends out there ever had :) Not to forget I was extremely irresponsible and reckless back then too…

Three of my relationships ended and one has just started (of course it would be awkward and completely douchebaggery of me if more than one relationships are currently active, duh :P ).

But the point he was trying to make was clear. He, being a single for as long as I can remember, I guess he was amused at how I can say the L word again to somebody new.

Well that is love.

You meet somebody you totally fall heads over heels in love with, and you say “I love you” to that person, and later when that doesn’t work out for various reasons, you grow apart, the distance becomes less fonder and the relationship ends, then you meet somebody else you fall more in love with than the former. That is love.

It’s a part of our natural cycle. In fact the only person I know who is now married (and with two kids) to the same girl he was going around with when we were just mere teenagers, is my good friend Sanga. They’ve been together since their early teens I think. That’s like a Fairy Tale come true for many of you.

Unfortunately, that’s not how it is for most of us. We move on, from one relationship to the other, until we find that perfect someone. And everything is perfect when we’re in that particular relationship, until they become imperfect.

I’m not trying to dampen your Valentine mood. I’m just saying… love, as much superficial as it may be sometimes, is something we go running to at the end of the day. Because that is what we all need, somebody to love, and be loved. A mutual feeling. (As somebody just updated her Facebook status today, “Anyone who loves in the expectation of being loved in return is wasting their time”. Beautiful.)

Today being Valentine’s Day, I was awakened by the two pigeons who’d fly into my bathroom everyday for the past 4 days, making love on top of my geyser.


They’d fly in through a gap on my bathroom window…


One would wait for the other dutifully…


Until the other partner too flies in…


And I try my best not to disturb them, except when I’m running late for work, or when our cat Gaddaffi gets extra curious…


Today, watching the two love birds, pun intended, cuddle together and get all lovey dovey, I suddenly missed my girl more. I wish I had wings like the birds in my bathroom so I can fly home to Mizoram just for today and be with my baby.

But as you may have read in my previous post, I have quit my job at WebChutney and started a new mobile gaming company with my friends. The name of our company is called FITH Media Pvt Ltd and we have just launched our first game called Nikal Padi.

Starting a new company is by no means a bed of roses. The amount of stress and pressure we go through every day is tremendous, but just one short whatsapp message from her really calms me down. She’s been my rock, and on this day I just want to say again how much I appreciate her for being there for me all this time.

I don’t wanna sound any more pretentious by saying things here that we say to each other every day anyway, and I don’t want to plaster private photos of us together all over my blog. She doesn’t want me to do that either. But there is one photo that means a lot to me, to us, and that has to be up here on this Valentine’s Day.

So here it is…


Yes, one of the earliest photographs taken in Mizoram, entitled “The first Men (fathers) of Mission Veng (locality name), 1964”. Did my grandfather and her great-grandfather ever think one day that we’d be a couple, deeply in love with each other, when the two of them were sitting right next to each other while posing for this valuable photograph? :)

Maybe. That’s probably why they look so confident and contented together :)

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone, and cheers.

*commenting disabled, sorry trolls and haters* :) :P

Monday, February 11, 2013

Chp 441. Goodbye old job. Hello new job.



You don’t love your job. You love your industry.

Welcome to the cutthroat world of digital advertising. Where you slog your ass off for 16 hours a day, usually 7 days a week, sometimes even camp in office for 3-4 days straight due to an extremely important pitch, partly because you want to succeed and rise up the corporate ladder, but mainly because you have passion. The passion to excel, the passion to come up with something innovative, something never done before, something… epic.

It’s not just about winning big clients or awards or living from pay cheque to pay cheque so you can throw it all away during a weekend binge; it’s about the gratification you get for having done a good job. Sure, money plays a big role, I’m not being na├»ve here, but the priceless look on your clients’ or peers’ or boss’ eyes when you present an idea to them that makes them go “wow”, is the exact reason why you put yourself through all these.

Commitment.

Of course we’re in an industry that has a love-hate relationship with clients. It is no secret that Admen bitch about clients for many reasons, like when they reject proposals we know will definitely work out for them. Clients may know their business more than us, but we know our industry more than them and we can indeed predict what will work out or not. Or when clients fail to grasp the very basic of what we do and try to steamroll us [Hilarious example would be from The Oatmeal].

But I also had my fair share of clients where I was the one pushing them to do this and do that and even ended up doing some of their work, just because I was committed to my goal.

That’s our industry.

And today, I must announce that I am leaving this industry, the industry that I love.

Almost five years now in Webchutney, ranked number 1 digital agency in India for 2008, 2009 and 2011, I am now one of the oldest employees in terms of duration. Corporate life is tough, especially when it comes to advertising. We see people getting fired or hopping companies all the time. To remain in the leading agency of India for such a long term had indeed been a privilege and honor for me.

Not to blow one’s own trumpet, but the amount of offers I had from other agencies, with much higher pay grade and designation, is something I’ll always cherish as an achievement. It showed that I was recognized in our industry. And I have nobody else to thank except Webchutney for that.

Leaving Webchutney doesn’t mean it’s the end of a relationship. I’ll always be loyal to this company, my first ever work experience, my first love. How I walked in and demanded for an interview as a fresher without any appointment and got a job will always be talked about. And how I rose up from copywriter trainee without even knowing what copywriters do, to junior copywriter, to copywriter, to senior copywriter, to Creative Trailblazer, all in a span of just 4 years, had indeed been a milestone for me.

But this is not just about me leaving Webchutney. It’s about me leaving this industry altogether. No more advertisement or pitches or client feedbacks. No more social media campaigns and designing newsletters and planning wireframes. A complete new horizon…

I’m moving into the Mobile Internet Gaming space! :)

I’ve always been a passionate gamer, and this is the exact field I want to be in. Scratch that. This is the exact field I have to be in. It’s in my DNA.

The journey from here is going to be about taking risks. And chances. And about the desire to be one of the pioneers before the herd moves in. The first-mover's advantage. Sure every person working in the digital field cribs about how extremely low internet penetration is here in India. And so everybody’s waiting for the great big Indian internet boom, but with the fast pace in which the global internet industry is moving, we strongly believe the future here in India too is not desktop internet, but rather phone and tablet internet (including the name of the genre I hate so much – phablet!). And that’s where we’re going to focus – A market sparsely penetrated here in India.

“But India has just 12% internet penetration, if you take away people with desktop internet access and focus only on mobile internet, that’s an even smaller percentage”

We’re well aware of that. But we’re also aware of the prospect that Indian internet mobile users can cross the 100 million mark before the end of this year! Brace yourself; an internet hurricane is going to sweep the Indian mobile world. Are you going to watch the storm pass by from a safe distance, or would you rather ride the lightning?

If things don’t work out, well, then, shit happens. But hey, we’ve been around for a long time and firmly believe in what we do. So do wish us all the best. And even if we don’t succeed, what is life if one doesn’t take any risks, right? Hehe… cheers y’all.

:)