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Posted By Subodh on Wednesday, March 24, 2010
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Life comes at you fast! Really fast

Ever pondered the meaning of life while hurtling down at 138 miles per hour? Meaning or Life? Back when I started at Yahoo, I was one of the young ones, labeled “firebrand Yahoo,” “trouble-monger,” “how-did-he-do-that-guy” and the likes. Then came the likes of Bipin and Yathin who so unceremoniously stripped me off my “angry-young-man” trophies. Its been 9 years since then? Whoa!


I do not feel like going to work. No, I’m just not going to show up for work today. Maybe not tomorrow as well. You know why? Its not about me, its all about You!



One of the first things I started doing at Yahoo! was playing pranks. Real practical pranks.


Ever interviewed at Yahoo? Wonder what the Yahoo interviewer would say if the interviewee offers a bribe?  Won’t work? Okay, what if the interviewee happens to be a well connected son-of-a-politician? Taking a leave? What if the interviewee begs you with folded hands and tugs n hugs? I do not think I want to know except that the folks who recorded the interview still can’t recount the whole episode without bursting in their tummy seams.

Those young guys! They’re having way too much fun.


Feeling too much Mr. Softy for the interviewer? Try answering this. How many words can you fit into a Floppy drive? Yeah, by typing. Anand Ramani still happens to be my favorite interviewer. He’s the only one who can ask you a tough Floppy drive question, take your money, watch a movie along with other Yahoos (with your money) and come back and ask if you solved the problem. I swear I had nothing to do with that particular prank. Okay, maybe a little bit.


Girls like to dance. Tell them they would get to dance with (ok, I’m old) Salman Khan and they won’t even think twice before rallying the entire office. No, they won’t realize for a whole month! They will rehearse, they will work overtime, they will skip food and put up with any unreasonable annoyance … they will still not admit they’ve been “tricked.”


You think I would be content with hapless Yahoos getting cheap tricked? David Filo probably still hates me for the horse ride from Airport to the Bangalore head quarters. With a full band playing in the background and crowd watching & prancing about. Yum


I have to admit I could never play a trick on Venkat. Dang! Every time I entered his office, I swear his eyes would widen like a hawk, ears start honing like a bat and nose start sniffing like I have something up my sleeves all the time.

Those young guys! How come they are having fun while I’m not?


Know the right trick to get a raise in Yahoo? Just borrow a couple thousand grand from your manager before the review and if he did not give you the raise you needed, threaten to keep the money! I remember scaring one manager so bad, he complained to the CEO and the HR. Ok, granted both of them burst laughing so bad they couldn’t do much. And the manager? He just wanted his money real bad I guess. He doesn’t speak to me much anymore. I do see him occasionally and he doesn’t notice me unless I call him by his nick name that refers to the patch (or lack of) hair on his head.


Then there was this really young guy who never really forgave me for that first interviewing episode. One day he visited the US and suddenly assumed the role of assigning me work over messenger. I woke up one day to find multiple Buzzes on my messenger client , My dreamy eyes were having a tough time focusing on the small text sent by him. As my eyes widened and my brain deciphered what was written “Why did you write the code like this?” I wrote back what was to be the last infamous prank.

Me: “Hey, how are you doing?”

Him: “Dude, I’ve been pinging you since evening. I even called your phone.”

Me: “Do you know the difference between horse shit and goat shit?”

Him: “What?”

Me: “See, a goat eats grass. Right”

Him: “What are you talking about?”

Me: “So does a horse.”

Him: “ok. and?”

Me: “So does a Cow”

Him: “I don’t get it.”

Me: “So all three animals eat the same thing – Grass. Right?”

Him: “Yep.”

Me: “Do you know why their shit is so different?”

Him: “You mean shit as in real shit?”

Me: “Yes. Each animal’s shit is different. Do you know why?”

Him: “I did take Biology as my fourth subject. What do you think?”

Me: “Okay, so tell me why is it different?”

Him: “Umm, I don’t know.”

Me: “What? You don’t know?”

Him: “No I don’t know.”

Me: “ You don’t know nothing about shit and you asking me about my code?”



There was a long silence on the messenger window. That day was incident free. I remember the Young guy reporting the messenger archives to the HR. I don’t think he ever bothered me again. The HR kinda told me to stop playing pranks “altogether” and that was that for the last 5 years until … today.


“How’s your day going?”       …………… Blah … blah…. blah…

“Uh, okay and ?”       …………… Blah … blah…. blah…

Something happened, he said something to which I responded “You do not really know what to do next do you?” He responded with “Give me an example.


“You have 30 days.”



No, its not about me. Its all about you. I don’t remember what it was about you. Coz I remember all the good things. But yes, I will ask “Do you know what to do next?

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 Comments & Discussions

  • Gravatar
    Prasanna Wednesday, April 28, 2010 at 8:37 PM

    I just want to know who you were talking to today.

    Also, if the comment box kinda centers, would be helpful, I dont have to scroll to see the entire dialog with a blank at the bottom.

    • Gravatar
      Subodh Thursday, April 29, 2010 at 12:47 AM
      All in due time sir.

      Centered it is isn't it?

  • Gravatar
    bipin Wednesday, April 28, 2010 at 10:11 PM

    Me: “ You don’t know nothing about shit and you asking me about my code?”
    Seriously? Ahahahaha.

    I suspect though, that there are most twists to come winking

    • Gravatar
      Subodh Thursday, April 29, 2010 at 12:57 AM

      happy Yes sir, seriously. Well, that was probably the last time we spoke. now that I look back, dang! what all did I do? *unbelievable* but, but.. I have proof big grin

  • Gravatar
    Joy Thursday, April 29, 2010 at 12:19 PM

    Uh, ok. I'd call Too Much Info on that!

    • Gravatar
      Subodh Thursday, April 29, 2010 at 1:11 PM
      Now, how can he do that?
      There are no proper nouns in this place( !!! big grin

      • Gravatar
        Friend Sunday, June 13, 2010 at 8:27 AM
        Don't get me wrong
        Don't get me wrong but you do sound arrogant - may be not with your pranks (except the last one may be) but sure with this blog post...

  • Gravatar
    gaylen Thursday, April 29, 2010 at 6:14 PM
    Now that's a fun read. I do remember that interview with the floppy drive question! That the best interview I've ever seen! LOL Great article sir.

  • Gravatar
    jignashu Sunday, June 13, 2010 at 7:21 AM
    30 days?
    What's that about?

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