Thursday, April 29, 2010

My Father

This is an apology post. In my post, "Standing Up", I was angry and said many things about my dad that really didn't do him justice. My old man is amazing and I'm like him in so many ways(more than I'd care to admit under normal circumstances) . Not that I'm saying I'm amazing but feel free to use your imagination.

Born into a well to do family of 6, he was the youngest child. India had recently gained it's independence and my grandfather was the assistant to the food minister of India at the time. All seemed to be going well until...

My grandfather passed away of a heart attack when my father was just 10 years old. For reasons unknown to me, the insurance never came through. The family had to move out of their beautiful government given house and was instantly plunged into poverty. My grandmother, who wasn't very well educated did her best to do what she could for her family. My eldest uncle was offered several jobs but was no where to be found when my family needed him the most and my aunts were still relatively young. From going to the school where the elite of the new India sent their offspring to a government school where the kids made fun of my father for being fluent in English. My dad somehow pulled through those years, excelling in all subjects except Geography I think it was which he failed ONCE and never forgot about(he's still sore about it to this day). He loved to play cricket like most Indian kids and when it was his turn to buy the cricket ball he would fold 100 pieces of paper into envelopes to make enough money to buy the ball. My aunts became typists at an early stage of their lives and gave their further education in the hopes of getting my father through his.

With their continuous efforts and some help from a close family friend, my father got into one of the best universities in India. The Birla Institute of Technology and Science at the age of 16 (the creator of hotmail was his senior). A time he tells me when he had the time of his life. During my time in Perth, I had the privilege of having one of his best friends and university mates as a local guardian. He'd tell me heavily censored stories of the mischief they'd get up to but also of how hard working and focused my father was. The boys would get ready to go out partying and would come banging on his door calling him to come out with them and they'd find him, face buried in some book. He rarely joined them. When the final exams came along, he did not sleep for the last 3 days of the exams and worked himself to exhaustion. It all payed off when he graduated as the 2nd rank holder in the entire university.

Immediately after graduation, there were not many jobs going, so he applied for a job as a salesrep for a pharmaceutical company, which he got. Every day, he'd cycle 10 km on a rented bicycle to visit his clients. While working full time, he did a post graduate course in marketing and accounting. Fast forward a few years and he's happily married to my mother and working as a factory manager in Bangkok. He now had a company car but could be called on any day 24/7 to fix a crisis at the factory. While holding that job, he began to do another business course through correspondence. Even though he scored higher than any full-timer doing the same course, he had to give it up as he simply didn't have the time.

My old man is brilliant. He never EVER gives up and doesn't believe in no win situations. No man is self made but he's as close the term as one can get. He is the most well read and traveled person I know and seems to have the answers to all my questions. There's nothing in the world the man doesn't know about and he keeps learning and expanding his knowledge through the educational channels on Astro, more books and magazines. Admittedly, I'm not as close to him as I would like to be which is because of how much he had to travel and work, all to protect us from ever having to face even an ounce the hardship he did. Everything I am and everything I have today, I have because of my parents.

If my dad and I are anything like each other there's one thing I know about us. We never stop thinking. Constantly I am plagued with thoughts that my overactive mind seems to have an endless supply of. The resonating effect that all these thoughts have on me causes me to worry and quite a lot of the time, you'll find me staring into space, lost in thought. I suspect this, amplified by his intelligence must cause him great distress which is why he resorts to drinking to numb his senses. I do it by tiring myself out through sport but each to their own I guess. Also I think it would be honorable to mention that he has recently stopped drinking though I can see that he's clearly troubled about it. The pros, of course, outweigh the cons in this case.

In my previous post I mentioned that my father didn't do my mother right. I was over exaggerating. They had an argument and, fueled by anger I clearly blew it out of proportion on my post. He takes her on holidays to England, France, Switzerland and soon Hong Kong for the Andrea Bocelli (his favourite singer after "Celine Dion the Soprano!!" as he keeps reminding me) concert where they have front row seats. He has also never been physically violent with my mother. Hardly the traits of an abusive husband.

I love and respect my father. If anyone out there, I don't care who you are,passes judgement on him, I will defend him with the same ferocity and enthusiasm that got him through life to where he is today and that defines us both. We are not and will never be spoilt trust fund brats. We are the underdogs. We are the epitome of perseverance.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Ahhh life

Misery is my inspiration today. Why am I miserable? Because I still can't decide what I want to do.
I'm rarely like this but when I am, oh my god... I mean I'm listening to snow patrol. I mean what next? Evanescense, red wine and guy-liner? Err, no thanks.

Every man must choose the path he wishes to take for the better years of his life. It's important to make sure you're making the right decision because if you want to get somewhere you're going to have to pay toll. Sacrifices have to be made if you want to succeed. For you dyslexic people who're only good with numbers, this is what I'm talking about.

Wake up- 8am
Office- 9am-6pm
Free time- 6pm-8pm
Dinner- 8pm-9pm
and between 9 to 11 assuming you don't have work to catch up on, you might be free.

When family comes into the equation you have even less time for yourself. Hence the new generation of over worked, under payed and unfit middle age men with beer bellies living depressing lives increasingly spending their meager pay on therapy. Asian men don't see any benefits in spending so much money on therapy when they can relieve stress by beating their kids while certain western people who may not be able to afford therapy or are plain stingy choose to put their frustrations into being perverts. But I digress. Life is stressful. And being as Indian as I am, I don't want to pay toll with the intentions to go to Bombay and ending up in Lahore.

Other than the above, the fact that I'm 21 and that I've lived outside home so much and suddenly have to abide with the " be home in time for dinner" and " don't come home after 11.30pm" rules has come as a rude shock to say the least. I'm talking finding Gandhi in your curry rude... Sure I'm living in my parents' house so I'm going to have to follow their rules but I'M 21!!!! No matter though, I have plans to escape.

If you're observant, you've probably noticed that the article is getting kind of weak. I think it's because I've come to my senses and just realised that bitching about things achieves nothing... except making you realise that you're being a bitch and bitching achieves nothing. Which kind of makes it beneficial.

I'm off to make my decision and follow the yellow brick government taxed road to Bombay. Wish me luck

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Pilot song

A hilarious song highlighting the typical cocky behavior of pilots

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Rum and Racism

So I've been in Perth for almost 2 years now, and I think I've had a reasonably good time...What am I talking about, it's been amazing! I've flown across Australia with my classmate in a single engine piston engine aircraft. I've gone on countless wild nights where we behaved like monkeys out of hell fueled on a chaotic cocktail concoction made of cocaine, crystal meth and heroin, and I've met some great people( and plenty of dickheads), seen some amazing things and acquired some priceless gems of knowledge.

Here's the thing though. Unless you've been living up your own ass for the last 3 to 4 years there are a few things you'd know. There have been numerous attacks on foreign students in Australia, a significant number of them on Indian students. About a month ago, an Indian student was beaten to death in Melbourne. Indian students are 2.5 times more likely to get attacked than other ethnic groups in Australia, and yet the government has not yet labeled these attacks as racist. ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME? Okay hold on, lets try to look at this from the government's point of view. Okay, so there have been countless attacks on Indian students and witnesses state that they saw the assailants provoke the Indians with names such as " curry muncher"(which I am disgusted at but find strangely hilarious) and other derogatory terms people over here use to describe Indians, but that doesn't make the attacks racially motivated. Nope, sorry, the government is run by morons, clearly they don't know what they're talking about.

It's not just brown people they're racist to, it's everyone who's remotely different. Even white people have to deal with racism here. Yupp, you read correctly, white people. Okay, here's my circle of friends in Perth. Almost all of us are foreign students. I live in a house with 1 half dutch half Indian guy, a dutch girl, A Scott, An Irishman, A Malteaser (he's from Malta), An Aussie and An English girl. The people from the other student houses are half Honduran half English, English, Half Mauritian half English, Italian, half Indian half English, Belgian and Mauritian. And all of us get along just fine. Last night, we decided to go to the 'night life center' of Perth. Personally I think it's a shit hole where men with small weiners try to compensate for size by picking fights with as many people as they can. The place is poorly lit, not very pretty and smells of every excreted bodily fluid known to mankind. There's so much violence that goes on around there that every weekend, half of Perth's police force patrols the area to stop young drunk people between the ages of 18-25 from beating the living shit out of each other. What am I missing... Hmm, oh that's right, they actually have lockup vans to throw people into waiting there. When the van gets full enough, they drive back to the police station. Such is the state of the night life here.

The night started out pretty well actually. We got a maxi cab that holds about 11 people and were screaming down the highway towards northbridge with great dance music blasting from the speakers. We could tell it was going to be a good night. Or so we thought. The first time I was outraged that night was when a bouncer refused to let one of my English friends in because he seemed to be too drunk. Bullshit, he looked fine, bouncers are muscle bound dickheads who love to fight and want to get paid for it. When my friend asked the bouncer why, the bouncer told him , AND I QUOTE, " Go back to your queen". What the hell is that about?! Completely unnecessary, not to mention, racist. Needless to say we had to pull my semi-intoxicated friend away to stop him from getting his face smashed in by the bouncer. FINE.. if we can't get in there, we'll go to another club. We're standing in line and there are no issues. Everyone in front of me gets in, YES! this is going to be awsome. I walk up to the bouncer, he checks my passport, but looks at my shoes and goes, " sorry, can't let you in with those".. Argh, fine, frustrated as I was I didn't want to argue with him. The club had a dress code and I didn't look the part. Fine. But what happened next would have made even Hitler go, " what the scheiser is that about!?". An annoying girl walks out of the club in slippers and goes to the same bouncer who didn't let me in " OH! THANKS FOR LETTING ME IN WITH FLIP FLOPS!", and stumbles off with her drunken-ass husband. It took a lot of effort to not walk up to that prick and floor him straight away. I guess the fact that he was one of those bald muscly tough guys helped me control my rage. Fuck it I thought, 2 of my friends were still with me, we walked to a different bar. Between meeting up with the main group and hanging out in the other bar, I learn that 3 of my friends tried to get into the same club that sent me walking. The same shiny headed cock juggling thunder cunt turned my friend( who as a bit of an accent) away for not wearing the right kind of shoes. When he tried reasoning with the bouncer, he goes, " Your shoes are ugly! Do you understand english? Comprende?" making fun of his accent. RACISM.. BASTARD! My other 2 friends did not like at all how JC was treated and got into an argument with the bouncer and he just pushed them away. He got violent as well..

The saddest part about all this is we can't do anything about this. If we complain to the management of the club, they'll just ignore us. If we complain to the police, they'd just see us as a bunch of drunk people looking to stir shit. And of course the government wouldn't help at all because they're too busy trying to look important and have lots of unnecessary forms to invent to make they're people's lives more miserable. Excellent. There's nothing we can do. It's like hiding dog shit under the carpet. You can't see the dog shit but your nose is screaming that it's there. And this place reeks of racism.

You know what the world needs? The world needs more vigilates. I'm not talking mislead extremist people, or masked men who wear their underwear on the outside and run around in capes, I'm talking decent people willing to stand up for a noble cause. People who can and will punish wrongdoings such as racism, on the spot. Eliminate the scum of the human race or beat enough sense into them so that they realise that they can't treat people the way they do. The world has plenty of pen pushers. What we need is more firepower. Whoever said violence is not the answer got it wrong. Violence should never be the answer but sometimes it is. It's people like the Burmese Junta, Robbert Mugabi, Saddam Hussein (who got what he deserved eventually but for the wrong reasons) and Pervez Musharraf are just some examples of people who have/are getting away with atrocities. People like them don't need to be sent strongly worded letters or have their actions condemned. Oooo you sent Mugabi a strongly worded letter to condemn his actions.. his bunny slippers just ran for cover.... No, people like them need to be shot. And to all you pacifists who don't agree with what I'm saying, what are you going to do about it? Yeah.. that's what I thought, my point exactly. I'm not saying Gandhi was a useless prick, I'm just saying that to purge the world of the likes of people I mentioned above, one can't go on huger strikes or sign petitions to make things happen. Screw the paperwork, send the military in, kick ass and be done with it once and for all.
All that is needed for the forces of evil to triumph is for enough good men to do nothing.
-Edmund Burke

I'm not saying that we're not doing ANYTHING but we are capable of doing so much more.

A little message to all the scumbag bouncers out there; Fuck you, get a real job doorman.

And to the rednecks who chased me down the road in my car and all the other racist people out there, Foreigners and foreign students bring unimaginable amounts of money into your country helping it prosper and making it much better than you would ever be able to sitting on your ass at home, unemployed and getting paid by the government for doing nothing. Fuck you too.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Mellow Me

Ah, irony. Remember back in school, after the holidays your first English assignment would almost definitely be " what did you do during the holiday" and how you'd let out a groan and really not want to write about it? Well here I am writing about my holiday.

To be honest, I wasn't even meant to be going home in December. I was focused and gearing up to finish off my Australian ATPL theory exams. Reminiscing about life back then ( i.e a month and a half ago, seems like AGES ago typing about it now) things were quite different. I was more highly strung than a pulled back bow, my room was a mess and I hated everything(and at times everyone). I felt like everything was out to get me, I was tripping on every vine hidden in the undergrowth of the forest called life and I was PISSED OFF.

So there I was, angry, mentally exhausted, messy, frustrated and worried. Life was a Cessna 152 Aerobat spiraling out of control and I was behind the controls disoriented and throwing up. Until one afternoon when I get a phone call from my sister. For reasons I don't really want to mention on my blog, I immediately knew I had to go home. The tickets were booked for the week after and relief began to set in. I was going home! Back to the land of Nasi Lemak, old friends and of course mum's cooking.

I know, this isn't a very interesting post, but my point is, somewhere between between going to Thailand for a holiday , hanging out with old friends, regular family feuds and finding the guts to confess feelings I've had for someone for a while now, I've become more mellow. Even in stress inducing situations, I seem to be able to calmly deescalate the problem.Everything seems so much easier.

Sure, I there will be times when I'll be down on my luck and I'll feel like giving up but now, deep down inside I know I'll come out smiling in the end. " Things always work out in the end. If they haven't yet, its not the end"- I forgot who said that. A thought that brings great comfort to me in times of adversity.

I'm not sure what it is or why it has happened but I am thankful for it. I feel one step closer to ' Finding out what I'm really made of', and even though I see almost impenetrable storms in the skies of my life, I know that bruised and battered as I may get I will eventually power through.

Something has definitely changed.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Standing up

Today, I am pissed off.. No.. That would be an understatement.. Imagine Satan taking an afternoon nap, which he probably deserves seeing as the bastard works so hard taking care of serial murderers, rapists, dictators and Walt Disney . Now imagine sneaking up next to him and setting an air horn off right next to his ear. That is how pissed off I am.

My drunken-ass father tells me today that he expects me to work as a salesman in his company and get my MBA part time... That is just retarded. Studying to get an MBA full time would take someone about 5 years. Imagine trying to do it part-time. I'd be stuck doing something I HATE for YEARS before I go on to doing something worthwhile. If I had better qualifications, I wouldn't have to be stuck doing grunt work. I mean we're not Bill Gates rich but I know that we can easily afford the full time course I planned to do.

He thinks he's so f*cking great... Granted, he achieved a lot but that doesn't give him the right to treat everyone at home(especially my poor mother) like sh!t. His idea of being a good father and husband is simply providing for his family. There's so much more to it, and even I know that! His ego is intolerable and he stumbles around parties intoxicated boasting his achievements. Frankly, I find it embarrassing to be around him most of the time. That night at the party, he drove me home drunk and the following day made jokes at my expense in front of his friends about how he was perfectly safe to drive and I was worrying for no reason. THE MAN COULDN'T EVEN WALK STRAIGHT.

That's it, no more of this bullshit. I've made my decision... I will blaze my own trail. I'll become a Commercial Pilot and finance my own further education. The further I get away from him the better it will be for me.

Sunday, January 3, 2010


DUTY, the social force that binds you to the courses of action demanded by that force.
Usage: "we must instill a sense of duty in our children".

This was my father's weapon of choice when he told me that the last 2 years of my life spent working towards a career as an Airline Pilot were so that I could "have my fun for a year or two but eventually get into business".

I've always known that I would become a Pilot. I have been obsessed with flying since I was 5 years old. 90% of my time outdoors was spent gazing into the wild blue spotting Airplanes wondering how high they were flying, how fast they were going and what the view was like from the cockpit. The fact that my mother did marketing for the aviation magazine "Flight International" and got free copies of the mags only fed my obsession.

Fast forward 14 years and there I was, fresh out of A-Levels( which I hated) and behind the controls of a Cessna 152. I mean sure it was no Concorde but it flew. From the minute the wheels left the ground I was hooked. I've never done any hard drugs before but I recognized addiction. Flying an aircraft all by yourself (after learning to overcome the airsickness) is one of the most beautiful experiences very few people get to experience.

Another 2 years fly by(no pun intended) and there I was, 2 stripes on each shoulder and a smile on my face, knocking off my ATPL exams and looking for a job. Everything seemed to be going according to the plan I had formed when I was 12, Until...

It's December the 14th and I am home for some of the Australian summer.(That's right people, television is a lie! December means winter for only the northern hemisphere while the southern hemisphere hits temperatures of up to 45 degress celcius! Santa on this side of the world is a strange man board shorts, thongs and a singlet who's sleigh is really a cart towed by kangaroos). I'm sitting with my dad after coming home and out of nowhere he goes, in Hindi, " What are you going to do as A pilot? There's not much money for a lot of years of your life..." I go on to tell him that it's been my dream for ages, which he already knows. That's when the word pops up. Duty." It is your DUTY to work for and maybe one day take over the company." He goes on to tell me the story about how Mukesh Ambani got called on by his father IN THE MIDDLE OF HIS MBA COURSE to come back and take charge of the family business. Mukesh Ambani went on to make about 10 times more than his then 2 billion.

Some things my father said in his drunken stupor really hit me though. The first being, " Son, as a Pilot, all you'll do is fly people around, and lose years of your life in the air(some people have total flying times of around 25000 hours, equivalent to about 3 years spent in the air, away from their families and friends) but work for and manage businesses and you employ people, and feed their families. You help economies grow and what you leave behind becomes your legacy." Now the reason this hit me is because about a year and a half ago, I had deecided that I somehow wanted to help Asia. I wanted to help it grow and make it a better place. I wanted to help bring out it's full potential and help as many people as possible because, god knows that the world we live in needs all the help it can get and if you have the ability to make a difference no matter how small, you shouldn't hold back. And the reason I want to help Asia in particular is simply because I am Asian.

The second thing my father said that really hit me was, " Don't you ever think you were meant for something bigger? Why build a hut when you're capable of a Taj Mahal?"(Yes, I know, he is extremely Indian, It's because of people like him that the word is an adjective as much as it is a nationality) Now this really got me thinking... I'm the kind of person who always pushes to see how far he can take something.(which, needless to say, has gotten me into heaps of shit but also won me quite a few things). Just like with life, in rock climbing when you encounter this one hold out of arm's reach and there's no other way to get to it but to leap? At that moment we have 2 choices. A, not leap, stay where we are, get fatigued and eventually fall off, Or B, leap and maybe accomplish something.

After typing all this out, I realize something. Not all weapons were designed for destruction. It also appears that I have come to a decision.

I can always fly recreationally, it's more fun than pushing buttons and monitoring systems in big jets. Looks likeI'm going to university!