Sunday, July 31, 2005

Your beans are not in the session,
May I present you a null pointer exception?

True glory lies not in never falling but rising each time we fall,
ps:- The mainframe has not returned your call.

You make your request,
I choose not to respond,
Reflect, repent, and restart,
Uh-oh.. I guess your code is gone...

Code worked before tea
Code worked before coffee,
Application crashes after egg puff.
WebSphere Application Developer moves in mysterious ways.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

I have been wrenched away from my cubicle and allotted a new one.I'm shattered.

When I first joined my project after training, I didnt have a comp assigned to me.I led a rather nomadic existence, moving from computer to computer as demanded of me. Naturally this was a bit of a pain because just I settled down and started to do something productive I'd be asked to move.

I had always had my eye on a particular cubicle. It was unoccupied but the computer was not on the network, making it impossible to use. I had repeatedly asked my project leader for that particular spot but she would give me the same reason each time. Then one day as I sat cramped between two people with a comp that acted as a server for the neighbouring project(painfully, painfully slow!) and the keyboard on my lap, my PL tapped on the shoulder, smiled and said "Its ready and its all yours!"

The next couple of months were sheer bliss.Only those who have experienced the torture of running Websphere Application Developer on a 256 MB RAM machine will know the happiness that comes from migrating to a 512. The cubicle was by itself perfect. Unlike the other one's where four people each got corner, I got a small cubicle all to myself. True it was the size of a cardboard box, but as a former nomad without a machine, I considered myself extremely lucky. I settled down between those 3 walls and spent many a happy afternoon dozing after lunch. I even had a blue dustbin all to myself. I felt truly at home.

But in the software industry, everything is ephemeral. Just as you settle down, things turn upside down and everything changes drastically. This holds true of both the customers requirements and the cubicle you use. One morning as I was just making myself comfortable after breakfast, I was curtly asked by my project manager to move 3 rows down as another team was moving in. I wasnt given a chance to argue. I had to pack up and leave. The only good news was that my machine would be moving with me.

My new location is not as good as the old one. I have only two walls instead of three. I share the cubicle with 3 others and there's a large pillar to my right. The teams on either side are a noisy enthusiastic bunch and make my afternoon nap a sheer impossibility. I think its going to take a while to settle down.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Much apologies for this delayed update. Hours at the office are at best unpredictable and the CAT is only 4 months away....besides I've lead a remarkably unremarkable life in the last couple of weeks. Will update soon.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

No Anon, I did not remove your comment because it annoyed me.I removed it because you were right. If I was writing about my english teacher, the least I could do was to ensure that the spelling and grammar was right :-). I've removed all the mistakes I could find. Do let me know if I've overlooked something.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Mrs Rani Chandran, perhaps the best teacher I've ever had passed away last week. She was killed in a tragic road accident.

If I'm able to cobble my words together today and then twist the sentences into something interesting, I owe it all to her. She was the first person to really encourage my writing. Sure, I dont have any complaints against my other English teachers but I always worked extra hard to please Mrs RC. Her compliments made me feel on top of the world.

It’s a pity but our first impressions of each other left much to be desired. My english teacher in the 7th standard got frustrated with my stubborn refusal to do english homework and sent me off to meet Mrs RC who was the head of the english department. I'd never spoken to her before but I strode jauntily into the staff room fully confident of myself. No way was some pavum English teacher going to convince me to do homework. A lot of my confidence stemmed from the fact that my mom was also a teacher in my school. I was a lot more casual towards my teachers than the rest of the kids.

RC tore me apart.

I walked in expecting special treatment. I was after all a teacher's son. I knew my teachers personally and expected a couple of gentle rebukes before being let off the hook. Instead I was ripped to pieces.

She examined my class notes and my homework for the year, the grand total of which came to exactly two sheets. Then she got angry, very very angry. Who the hell did I think I was anyway? What kind of handwriting was this? Was I too good to take notes and do my homework? The lashing went on and on. I lost all track of time, space and motion.

I came out the staff room, knees shaking, heart palpitating and ears bleeding. I spent the next couple of night’s frantically compiling class notes and homework. My mother was thoroughly ashamed and gave me hell at home. It was a very trying week.

I lived in complete fear of RC for the next couple years. Then when I came to the 9th standard, she handled Shakespeare...and it was amazing. She was one of those few people who could really lift the level of your thinking. If you answered her questions correctly, you would feel so damn smart.

I still remember the first time I 'acted' on stage. It was a skit on road safety. Another english teacher was directing the play and after having paid special attention to my excellent theatrical skills and the wide range of emotions I could display, she made me part of the road. Yep, I had to wear black and lie down on the floor with some other unfortunate kids while more acomplished actors walked all over us. I felt pretty lousy about it until RC took over. She made every kid feel like he or she was vital to the success of the play. It didnt matter what role you played. Suddenly I was incredibly happy to lie down while other kids stepped on my face. I was PROUD to be part of the road

I got to know her very well over the next couple of years. I played more prominent roles in the plays she directed, took part in debates and edited the school newsletter that she was in charge of. When it came to extra-curricular activities, the last couple of years in school were the best.

I'll always remember RC as no nonsense woman who would encourage you when you were down and put you in your place when you got too cocky. She spoke the Queen’s English and carried herself with such dignity; you couldn’t help but be in awe of her. Now THAT was a TEACHER.