Ten things to do before I snuff it

As a general rule, people who enter their late sixties or early seventies begin to entertain intimations of mortality. This does not necessarily presage a mindset devoted to gloom, doom and despondency. Unless, of course, one is an unfortunate victim of some crippling affliction. Such is not my saturnine state of mind. I am, by …

A Toolkit for Mr. Tikait

Until very recently, my idea of a toolkit was a somewhat rusty old metal box in my late father-in-law’s workshop consisting of a variety of implements like hammer, chisel, pliers, screws, rawlplugs, drill bits, industrial glue, sandpaper, lengths of wire and a few sundry items, names of which I cannot readily recall. He was very …

Making a clean breast of things

Convicted Criminal: As God is my judge I am innocent.Judge Norman Birkett: He isn’t, I am and you’re not! After all the ongoing brouhaha over the never-ending farmers’ agitation in the capital, followed by even more heated debates and discussions on the Union Budget, to say nothing of the all-pervading Covid19 situation which kind of …

An open letter to the Union Finance Minister

Ms. Nirmala SitharamanUnion Finance MinisterCabinet SecretariatRaisina HillNew Delhi.                                                                          January 27, 2021. Dear Ms. Sitharaman, On the first of February, you will rise to present the Union Budget to the nation from the Lok Sabha – an event, I venture to suggest, that captures more attention than most programmes barring the Prime Minister’s periodic updates to …

‘May you live in interesting times’

The more observant and eagle-eyed amongst you, dear readers, would be asking yourselves why the innocuous headline to this essay is bookended by single quotation marks. The simple answer to that is because it is a quotation, the provenance of which is shrouded in some doubt. The best explanation I was able to glean from …

Bruised, Battered, Bloody but Unbowed

The on-going cricket Test series between India and Australia, being played Down Under has reached its apogee. The series stands at one all, one match heroically drawn and the deciding Test to be played at Brisbane over the coming weekend. Unlike match-ups between these two proud cricketing nations over several decades, when the Aussies ruled …

Looking back with Limericks

Edward Lear (1812-1888) was an English artist, illustrator, poet and musician. However, he will be best remembered as the man who introduced the world to a new poetic form, to wit, the limerick. A simple definition of a limerick would run thus, ‘a kind of humorous verse of five lines, in which the first, second …