Thursday, September 17, 2009

Under Advisement

Recently a desi dude who is more acquaintance less friend called to check in on me. Those who have read this blog before might know that such calls tend to make me anxious. Depending on how far back we go, there are sets of FAQs that I brace myself to answer. The trick is to be sufficiently evasive without being downright offensive - a fine balancing act given the provocative nature of questions involved. I look at these calls as opportunities for building patience and tolerance both of which I seriously lack. Basically, they are very desirous of finding out how I am doing in my personal and professional life to be sure that they have me correctly categorized and filed for future reference.

The major buckets appear to be loser, struggling, average, arrived, superstar and uncategorizable. My goal needless to say, is to be in the last bucket - the unknown, unquantifiable and therefore uninteresting entity. Their aim is to pull me into something more tangible. So anyways, the dude in question asked to find out what kind of technology I was working on these days. After some hemming and hawing at my end and some serious prodding on his, I confessed that I was doing business intelligence and web analytics stuff among other things.

Right away, he tells me that in my line of work I would find it impossible to stay employed stateside. The jobs are drying up fast and furious and only the most enterprising and technology savvy would survive. If I decided to head home to India (as I may very well need to in short order), the competition would so intense that I would need to work for peanuts if I even hoped to find a job. The cost of living in Indian metros being what it is, that would make for a very difficult life. In essence I was burrowing my way into my professional grave as I data mined my days away.

Now, cloud computing ( which is what said dude did for a living) was an area where a man could name his price home (America in his case as he had recently become a citizen) and abroad. There was a huge demand for his skills and no supply to speak of. Only recently a client in India had put him up at the Hyatt Regency for a couple of years so he could consult for them. They also paid him obscene amounts of money for his trouble. Just in case I was hoping to jump on the cloud computing gravy train, he was quick to point out that the chances of one such as myself being able to dig myself out of the hole that I was in were fairly slim. You get set in your ways and become incapable of staying on the bleeding edge of technology.

Each time I am subjected to one of these things, I wonder why I go through it in the first place. Part of the reason is curiosity - I am completely fascinated by how some desi bros think. They simply don't know when to stop once they get in the flow of self-aggrandization, specially when they can tell a sister she has it all wrong. I love to see if they have any limits at all. This dude went on for a full hour and to my credit I gave him my complete and undivided attention. If not anything else, I made a bro feel like king of the world.


Priyamvada_K said...

"This dude went on for a full hour and to my credit I gave him my complete and undivided attention. If not anything else, I made a bro feel like king of the world."

I've got to give it to you, lady! You are one masochist :D...Patience and tolerance building exercise, indeed!

I wonder why people feel the need to bring others down and keep on doing it for an hour. They claim to be "well-wishers" but make one wish they could jump into a well :)


Sreelu said...

Dudett, your post tickled my funny bone, just came back from my yearly desh trip only to drilled that I am wasting my life in a country thats going down the hill,people and their attitudes gets you. on the brighter side I learnt the act of listening without listening ah ah !!

Heartcrossings said...

Priya - I guess I am :) But the things you learn about the ways of the world this way is priceless.

Sreelu - Thanks for stopping by. Yeah, there is no dearth of folks who will tell you how you've messed up your life past the point of recovery.

Freaky said...

Its the same messed up scenario in finance too. Everyone just jumps with career advice and the never-ending salary comparisons.

Bishu said...

Why is it all NRI blog-post is always about how silly are other NRIs. Yeh recurring theme ka raaz kya hain ? Why do each desi folk who have had a lil chance of rubbing shoulders with Goras think themself a psuedo-goras and look down upon the fellow desis.
However considering that these type of holier-than-thou posts are an absolute riot in DesiPundit, I guess we will continue to see more more posts on this topic day after day.

Heartcrossings said...

Freaky - Good to know - misery loves company as they say :)

Bishu - This is not an NRI malaise at all. It is more a desi thing. Far too many of us know what's good for our brothers and sisters and we don't hesitate to opine even if it means having to be offensive.