Monday, December 26, 2005
Saturday, December 17, 2005
2...God won't ask the square footage of your house, He'll ask how many people you welcomed into your home.
3...God won't ask about the clothes you had in your closet, He'll ask how many you helped to clothe.
4...God won't ask what your highest salary was, He'll ask if you compromised your character to obtain it.
5...God won't ask what your job title was, He'll ask if you performed your job to the best of your ability.
6...God won't ask how many friends you had, He'll ask how many people to whom you were a friend.
7...God won't ask in what neighborhood you lived, He'll ask how you treated your neighbors.
8...God won't ask about the color of your skin, He'll ask about the content of your character.
9...God won't ask why it took you so long to seek Salvation, He'll lovingly take you to your mansion in heaven, and not to the gates of Hell.
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
If you don't climb the mountain, You can't see the view.
It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice.
Ideas are funny things.They don't work unless you do.
Leisure is a beautiful garment, but it will not do for constant wear.
Never judge a man's actions until you know his motives.
There is nothing more terrifying than ignorance in action.
Some people never make a mistake, nor do they ever make anything else.
Faith with works is a force. Faith without works is a farce.
The only thing worse than a quitter is the man who is afraid to start.
Our words may hide our thoughts, but our actions will reveal them.
No farmer ever plowed a field by turning it over in his mind.
The right angle to approach a difficult problem is the "try-angle.
"Age has nothing to do with learning new ways to be stupid.
The awkward age is when you are too old for the Peace Corps and too young for Social Security.
An alarm clock is a device for awakening people who don't have small children.
Youth looks ahead, old age looks back, and middle age looks tired.
Peace may cost as much as war, but it's a better buy.
True love doesn't consist of holding hands...it consists of holding hearts.
Love is the only game that two can play and you'll either have two winners or two losers.
Men fight for freedom and then start making laws to get rid of it.
Monday, November 28, 2005
He remembered dying, and that the dog walking beside him had been dead for years. He wondered where the road was leading them.
After a while, they came to a high, white stone wall along one side of the road. It looked like fine marble. At the top of a long hill, it was broken by a tall arch that glowed in the sunlight.
When he was standing before it he saw a magnificent gate in the arch that looked like mother-of-pearl, and the street that led to the gate looked like pure gold. He and the dog walked toward the gate, and as he got closer, he saw a man at a desk to one side.
When he was close enough, he called out, "Excuse me, where are we?"
This is Heaven, sir," the man answered.!
"Wow! Would you happen to have some water?" the man asked.
"Of course, sir. Come right in, and I'll have some ice water brought right up."
The man gestured, and the gate began to open.
"Can my friend," gesturing toward his dog, "come in, too?" the traveler asked.
"I'm sorry, sir, but we don't accept pets."
The man thought a moment and then turned back toward the road and continued the way he had been going with his dog.
After another long walk, and at the top of another long hill, he came to a dirt road leading through a farm gate that looked as if it had never been closed. There was no fence.
As he approached the gate, he saw a man inside, leaning against a tree and reading a book.
"Excuse me!" he called to the man. "Do you have any water?"
"Yeah, sure, there's a pump over there, come on in."
"How about my friend here?" the traveler gestured to the dog.
"There should be a bowl by the pump."
They went through the gate, and sure enough, there was an old-fashioned hand pump with a bowl beside it.
The traveler filled the water bowl and took a long drink himself, then he gave some to the dog.
When they were full, he and the dog walked back toward the man who was standing by the tree.
"What do you call this place?" the traveler asked.
"This is Heaven," he answered.
"Well, that's confusing," the traveler said. "The man down the road said that was Heaven, too."
"Oh, you mean the place with the gold street and pearly gates? Nope. That's hell."
"Doesn't it make you mad for them to use your name like that?"
"No, we're just happy that they screen out the folks who would leave their best friends behind."
Friday, November 11, 2005
After a while, one local train arrived, which was totally packed. The Sikh youth tried to alight the train but failed to do so. Just then a voice was heard from the back coach 'Sardarji Barah Baj gaye' (Sir it's 12 o'clock!)
The Sikh youth looked over at that voice maker who was a young Mischievous type of person and instead of showing any anger made a smile towards him.
The smile made was so enigmatic that it seemed as if some type of truth lies behind it. Not able to resist my temptation, I walked towards him and asked why did he smile at that person who teased him. The Sikh youth replied, 'He was not teasing me but was asking for my Help'. I was surprised with these words and he told me that there was a big history behind that which one should know. I was eager to know the History and the Sikh youth narrated:
During 17th Century, when Hindustan was ruled by Mughals, all the Hindu people were humiliated and were treated like animals. Mughals treated the Hindu women as there own property and were forcing all Hindus to accept Islam and even used to kill the people if they were refusing to accept.That time, our ninth Guru, Sri Guru Teg Bahadarji came forward, in response to a request of some Kashmir Pandits to fight against all these cruel activities. Guruji told the Mughal emperor that if he could succeed in converting him to Islam, all the Hindus would accept the same.
But, if he failed, he should stop all those activities. The Mughal emperor happily agreed to that but even after lots of torture to Guruji and his fellow members he failed to convert him to Islam and Guruji along with his other four fellow members, were tortured and sacrificed their lives in Chandni Chowk. Since the Mughals were unable to convert them to Islam they were assassinated.
Thus Guruji sacrificed his life for the protection of Hindu religion. Can anybody lay down his life and that too for the protection of another religion? This is the reason he is still remembered as "Hind Ki Chaddar", shield of India. For the sake of whom he had sacrificed his life, none of the them came forward to lift his body, fearing that they would also be assassinated.
Seeing this incident our 10th Guruji, Sri Guru Gobind Singhji (Son of Guru Teg Bahadarji) founder of khalsa made a resolution that he would convert his followers to such human beings who would not be able to hide themselves and could be easily located in thousands.
At the start, the Sikhs were very few in numbers as they were fighting against the Mughal emperors. At that time, Nadir Shah raided Delhi in the year 1739 and looted Hindustan and was carrying lot of Hindustan treasures and nearly 2200 Hindu women along with him. The news spread like a fire and was heard by Sardar Jassa Singh who was the Commander of the Sikh army at that time. He decided to attack Nadir Shah's Kafila on the same midnight. He did so and rescued all the Hindu women and they were safely sent to their homes.
It didn't happen only once but thereafter whenever any Abdaalis or Iranis had attacked and looted Hindustan and were trying to carry the treasures and Hindu women along with them for selling them in Abdal markets, the Sikh army although fewer in numbers but were brave hearted and attacked them at midnight,12 O'clock and rescued women.
After that time when there occurred a similar incidence, people started to contact the Sikh army for their help and Sikhs used to attack the raider's at Midnight, 12 O'clock. Nowadays, these "smart people" and some Sikh enemies who are afraid of Sikhs, have spread these words that at 12 O'clock, the Sikhs go out of their senses. This historic fact was the reason which made me smile over that person as I thought that his Mother or Sister would be in trouble and wants my help and was reminding me by saying off 'Sardarji Barah Baj Gaye'
"Its easy to joke on a Sardar, but It's too difficult to be a Sardar"
Sunday, November 06, 2005
"You grew up in a different, actually almost primitive, world," the studentsaid loud enough for the whole crowd to hear. "We young people today grew up with television, jet planes, space travel, man walking on the moon, our spaceships have visited Mars...We even have nuclear energy, electric and hydrogen cars, computers with light-speed processing ....and uh.."
Taking advantage of a pause for breath in the student's litany, the "wizened" one said, "You're right, Son. We didn't have those things when we were young........so we invented them......you arrogant idiot!!
Now......what are you doing for the next generation??"
Friday, October 21, 2005
The famous race of the Rabbit and the Tortoise -
Once upon a time a tortoise and a hare had an argument about who was
They decided to settle the argument with a race. They agreed on a route
and started off the race.
The hare shot ahead and ran briskly for some time.
Then seeing that he was far ahead of the tortoise, he thought he'd sit under
a tree for some time and relax before continuing the race. He sat under
the tree and soon fell asleep.
The tortoise plodding on overtook him and soon finished the race, emerging as the undisputed champ.
The hare woke up
and realized that he'd lost the race.
The moral- "Slow and steady wins the race. This is the version of the
story that we've all grown up with."
THE STORY DOESN'T END HERE
there are few more interesting
things.....it continues as follows......
The hare was disappointed at losing the race and he did some
He realized that he'd lost the race only because he had been overconfident,
careless and lax.
If he had not taken things for granted, there's no way the tortoise could have beaten him. So he challenged the tortoise to another race.
The tortoise agreed. This time, the hare went all out and ran without
stopping from start to finish. He won by several miles.
The moral - " Fast and consistent will always beat the slow and steady.
It's good to be slow and steady; but it's better to be fast and reliable."
THE STORY DOESN'T END HERE
The tortoise did some thinking this time, and realized that there's no
way it can beat the hare in a race the way it was currently formatted.
It thought for a while, and then challenged the hare to another race, but
on a slightly different route. The hare agreed. They started off. In keeping
with his self-made commitment to be consistently fast, the hare took off and
ran at top speed until he came to a broad river. The finishing line was a
couple of kilometres on the other side of the river.
The hare sat there
wondering what to do.
In the meantime the tortoise trundled along, got into the river, swam to the opposite bank, continued walking and finished the race.
The moral - "First identify your core competency and then change the
playing field to suit your core competency."
THE STORY STILL HASN'T ENDED
The hare and the tortoise, by this time, had become pretty good friends
and they did some thinking together.
Both realized that the last race could
have been run much better. So they decided to do the last race again, but to
run as a team this time.
They started off, and this time the hare carried the tortoise till the riverbank. There, the tortoise took over and swam
across with the hare on his back. On the opposite bank, the hare again carried
the tortoise and they reached the finishing line together. They both felt a
greater sense of satisfaction than they'd felt earlier.
The moral - "It's good to be individually brilliant and to have strong
core competencies; but unless you're able to work in a team and harness each
other's core competencies, you'll always perform below par because
there will always be situations at which you'll do poorly and someone else
Teamwork is mainly about situational leadership, letting the person
with the relevant core competency for a situation take leadership.
Note that neither the hare nor the tortoise gave up after failures. The
hare decided to work harder and put in more effort after his failure. The
tortoise changed his strategy because he was already working as hard as
In life, when faced with failure,
sometimes it is appropriate to work
harder and put in more effort.
Sometimes it is appropriate to change strategy and try something different.
And sometimes it is appropriate to do both.
The hare and the tortoise also learnt another vital lesson. When we stop competing against a rival and instead start competing against the
situation, we perform far better.
To sum up- the story of the hare and tortoise has much to say:
Chief among them are that fast and consistent will always beat slow and
steady;work to your competencies; pooling resources and working as a team will always beat individual performers; never give up when faced with
failure; & finally, compete against the situation - not against a rival.
Friday, October 07, 2005
They spent a day and a night in the farm of a very poor family. "Son, How was the trip?", father asked after the trip. "Very good Dad!"
"Did you see how poor people can be?" the father asked.
"Yeah!", the son smiled.
"And what did you learn?"
The son answered,
"I saw that we have a dog at home,
and they have four......
We have a pool that reaches to the middle of the garden,
they have a creek that has no end.....
We have imported lamps in the garden,
they have the stars....
Our patio reaches to the front yard, they have a whole horizon."
When the little boy was finishing, his father was speechless.
His son added, "Thanks Dad for showing me how poor we are!"
Wednesday, October 05, 2005
Monday, October 03, 2005
1. If you can, sleep in an extra hour on Monday mornings. Going to bed early on Sunday night doesn't always help because most people will remain awake until their usual bedtime.
2. If you can't sleep in by a full hour (and most of us can't), take action Sunday night to shorten your morning preparation time so that you can set the alarm for 15 minutes later than usual. Wash your hair, pack lunches, lay out your outfit or pack your briefcase on Sunday night.
3. Hop out of bed the moment you wake up on Monday morning. Lingering in that downy comforter will only draw out the agony.
4. End your shower with a jolt of cold water to tear yourself out of your grogginess. Or exercise in the morning to get your blood pumping and to release those feel-good endorphins.
5. Get out in the sunlight. Bright light tells your body that it is indeed the morning and helps reset your internal clock.
6. Drink coffee or another caffeine beverage. Although it's not healthy to drink caffeine to the point of addiction, caffeine, when used in moderation, can give your Monday mornings that much-needed oomph and alertness.
7. Anticipate your Monday morning on Friday afternoon. Fight the temptation to race away from a messy desk. Clean up your desk and leave yourself a to-do list to make Monday morning a little more tolerable.
Take comfort in knowing that you are not alone in feeling miserable on Monday morning. There are millions of folks out there feeling the same way.
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke. Now doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions:
**Ask the individual to SMILE.*
* *Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS.*
* *Ask the person to SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE*.
If he or she has trouble with any of these tasks, call help immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher.
After discovering that a group of non medical volunteers could identify facial weakness, arm weakness and speech problems, researchers urged the general public to learn the three questions. They presented their conclusions at the American Stroke Association's annual meeting last February.
Widespread use of this test could result in prompt diagnosis and treatment of the stroke and prevent brain damage.
Please feel free to confirm this information with someone in the medical field before passing it on.
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
Believes in you.
Calls you just to say "hi."
Doesn't give up on you.
Envisions the whole of you (even the unfinished parts).
Forgives your mistakes.
Invites you over.
Just likes being with you.
Keeps you close at heart.
Loves you for who you are.
Makes a difference in your life.
Never judges you.
Picks you up.
Quiets your fears.
Raises your spirits.
Says nice things about you.
Tells you the truth when you need to hear it.
Walks beside you.
X-plains things you don't understand.
Yells when you won't listen.
Zaps you back to reality.
Monday, August 22, 2005
In 3000 years of our history, people from all over the world have come and invaded us, captured our lands, con quered our minds. From Alexander onwards. The Greeks, the Turks, the Moguls, the Portuguese, the British, the French, the Dutch, all of them came and looted us, took over what was ours. Yet we have not done this to any other nation. We have not conquered anyone.
We have not grabbed their land, their culture, their history and tried to enforce our way of life on them. Why? Because we respect the freedom of others. That is why my first vision is that of FREEDOM. I believe that India got its first vision of this in 1857, when we started the war of independence. It is this freedom that we must protect and nurture and build on. If we are not free, no one will respect us.
My second vision for India is DEVELOPMENT. For fifty years we have been a developing nation. It is time we see ourselves as a developed nation.
We are among top 5 nations of the world in terms of GDP We have 10 percent growth rate in most areas. Our poverty levels are falling. Our achievements are being globally recognized today. Yet we lack the self-confidence to see ourselves as a developed
nation, self- reliant and self-assured. Isn't this incorrect?
I have a THIRD vision.
India must stand up to the world. Because I believe that, unless India stands up to the world, no one will respect us. Only strength respects strength. We must be strong not only as a military power but also as an economic power. Both must go hand-in-hand. My good fortune was to have worked with three great minds. Dr. Vikram Sarabhai of the Dept. of space, Professor Satish Dhawan, who succeeded him and Dr.Brahm Prakash, father of nuclear material. I was lucky to have worked with all three of them close ly and consider this the great opportunity of my life.
I see four milestones in my career:
Twenty years I spent in ISRO. I was given the opportunity to be the project director for India's first satellite launch vehicle, SLV3. The one that launched Rohini. These years played a very important role in my life of Scientist.
After my ISRO years, I joined DRDO and got a chance to be the part of India's guided missile program. It was my second bliss when Agni met its mission requirements in 1994.
The Dept. of Atomic Energy and DRDO had this tremendous partnership in the recent nuclear tests, on May 11 and 13. This was the third bliss. The joy of participating with my team in these nuclear tests and proving to the world that India can make it, that we are no longer a developing nation but one of them. It made me feel very proud as an Indian. The fact that we have now developed for Agni a re-entry structure, for which we have developed this new material. A Very light material called carbon-carbon.
One day an orthopedic surgeon from Nizam Institute of Medical Sciences visited my laboratory. He lifted the material and found it so light that he took me to his hospital and showed me his patients. There were these little girls and boys with heavy metallic calipers weighing over three Kg. each, dragging their feet around.
He said to me: Please remove the pain of my patients.
In three weeks, we made these Floor reaction Orthosis 300-gram calipers and took them to the orthopedic center. The children didn't believe their eyes. >From dragging around a three kg. load on their legs, they could now move around!
Their parents had tears in their eyes. That was my fourth bliss!
Why is the media here so negative? Why are we in India so embarrassed to recognize our own strengths, our achievements? We are such a great nation. We have so many amazing success stories but we refuse to acknowledge them.
We are the first in milk production.
We are number one in Remote sensing satellites.
We are the second largest producer of wheat.
We are the second largest producer of rice.
Look at Dr. Sudarshan, he has transferred the tribal village into a self-sustaining, self driving unit. There are millions of such achievements but our media is only obsessed in the bad news and failures and disasters.
I was in Tel Aviv once and I was reading the Israeli newspaper. It was the day after a lot of attacks and bombardments and deaths had taken place. The Hamas had struck. But the front page of the newspaper had the picture of a Jewish gentleman who in five years had transformed his desert land into an orchid and a granary. It was this inspiring picture that everyone woke up to. The gory details of killings, bombardments, deaths, were inside in the newspaper, buried among other news.
In India we only read about death, sickness, terrorism, crime. Why are we so NEGATIVE?
Another question : Why are we, as a nation so obsessed with foreign things?
We want foreign TVs, we want foreign shirts. We want foreign technology. Why this obsession with everything imported. Do we not realize that self-respect comes with self-reliance?
I was in Hyderabad giving this lecture, when a 14 year old girl asked me for my autograph. I asked her what her goal in life is.
She replied: I want to live in a developed India.
For her, you and I will have to build this developed India. You must proclaim. India is not an under-developed nation; it is a highly developed nation.
Saturday, August 06, 2005
My mother used to ask me what is the most important part of the body. Through the years I would take a guess at what I thought was the correct answer.
When I was younger, I thought sound was very important to us as humans, so I said, 'My ears, Mommy.'
She said, 'No. Many people are deaf. But you keep thinking about it and I will ask you again soon.'
Several years passed before she asked me again. Since making my first attempt, I had contemplated the correct answer. So this time I told her, 'Mommy, sight is very important to everybody, so it must be our eyes'.
She looked at me and told me, 'You are learning fast, but the answer is not correct because there are many people who are blind.'
Stumped again, I continued my quest for knowledge and over the years, Mother asked me a couple more times and always her answer was, 'No. But you are getting smarter every year, my child.'
Then last year, my grandpa died. Everybody was hurt. Everybody was crying. Even my father cried. I remember that especially because it was only the second time I saw him cry. My Mom looked at me when it was our turn to say our final good-bye to Grandpa.
She asked me, 'Do you know the most important body part yet, my dear?'
I was shocked when she asked me this now. I always thought this was a game between her and me.
She saw the confusion on my face and told me, 'This question is very important. It shows that you have really lived in your life. For every body part you gave me in the past, I have told you was wrong and I have given you an example why. But today is the day you need to learn this important lesson.'
She looked down at me as only a mother can. I saw her eyes well up with tears. She said, 'My dear, the most important body part is your shoulder.'
I asked, 'Is it because it holds up your head?'
She replied, 'No, it is because it can hold the head of a friend or a loved one when they cry. Everybody needs a shoulder to cry on sometime in life, my dear. I only hope that you have enough love and friends that you will always have a shoulder to cry on when you need it.'
Then and there I knew the most important body part is not a selfish one. It is sympathetic to the pain of others.
People will forget what you said....... People will forget what you did........ But people will NEVER forget how you made them feel.
Friday, July 29, 2005
"Why does GOD have to select you for such a bad disease"?
To this, the player replied :
The world over -- 50 million children start playing tennis, 5 million learn to play tennis, 500,000 learn professional tennis, 50,000 come to the circuit, 5000 reach the grand slam, 50 reach Wimbeldon, 4 to semi final, 2 to the finals, When I was holding a cup I never asked "GOD Why me?".
And today in pain I should not be asking "GOD, Why me?"
Happiness keeps u Sweet,
Trials keep u Strong,
Sorrow keeps u Human,
Failure Keeps u Humble,
Success keeps u Glowing,
But only God Keeps u Going.....
Monday, July 25, 2005
He slammed on the brakes and spun the Jag back to the spot from where the brick had been thrown. He jumped out of the car, grabbed some kid and pushed him up against a parked car, shouting, "What was that all about and who are you? Just what the heck are you doing?!!" Building up a head of steam, he went on. "That's a new car and that brick you threw is gonna cost a lot of money. Why did you do it?!!"
"Please, mister, please, I'm sorry-I didn't know what else to do!" pleaded the youngster. "I threw the brick because no one else would stop......." Tears were dripping down the boy's chin as he pointed around the parked car. "It's my brother," he said. "He rolled off the curb and fell out of his wheelchair and I can't lift him up." Sobbing, the boy asked the executive,"Would you please help me get him back into his wheelchair? He's hurt and he's too heavy for me."
Moved beyond words, the driver tried to swallow the rapidly swelling lump in his throat. He lifted the young man back into the wheelchair and took out his handkerchief and wiped the scrapes and cuts, checking to see that everything was going to be okay.
"Thank you, sir. And God bless you." the grateful child said to him.
The man then watched the little boy push his brother down the sidewalk toward their home. It was a long walk back to his Jaguar...a long, slow walk. He never did repair the side door. He kept the dent to remind him not to go through life so fast that someone has to throw a brick at you to get your attention.
Life whispers in your soul and speaks to your heart. Sometimes, when you don't have the time to listen...Life throws a brick at your head.It's your choice: Listen to the whispers of your soul or wait for the brick.
Thursday, July 14, 2005
Teacher : Silent for few seconds, then he answered, well; it's a pretty hard and easy question.
Student : (Thinking hard) Huh???
Teacher : Look that way, there's a lot of grass there, why don't you walk there, but please never walk backward, just walk straight ahead. On your way, try to find a beautiful blade of grass and pick it up, then give it to me. But just ONE blade of grass!
Student : Well, ok then.. wait for me.. walked straight ahead on the grass field.
A few minutes later..
Student : I'm back.
Teacher : Erm, well I don't see any beautiful blade of grass in your hand.
Student : On my journey, I found a few beautiful blades of grass, but each time I thought that I would find a better one, so I didn't pick it up. But I didn't realize that I'm at the end of the field, and I hadn't picked up any. 'Cause you told me not to go back, so I didn't go back.
Teacher : That's what happens in real life..
What is the message of this story..?
In looking for your soul mate, please don't always compare and Hope that there will be a better one. By doing that, you'll waste your lifetime, 'coz remember Time Never Goes Back".
It applies similarly in finding your ideal life partner, your suitable, career or business opportunity..
Therefore the morale is :
LOVE & GRAB HOLD of the opportunity that you have. Don't waste time now - Go & get it now . . .
2. When things aren't going so well, take a break. Everything will look different when you return.
3. Be sure to look at the big picture. Getting hung up on the little pieces only leads to frustration.
4. Perseverance pays off. Every important puzzle went together bit by bit, piece by piece.
5. When one spot stops working, move to another. But be sure to come back later (see #4).
6. The creator of the puzzle gave you the picture as a guidebook.
7. Variety is the spice of life. It's the different colors and patterns that make the puzzle interesting.
8. Working together with friends and family makes any task fun.
9. Establish the border first. Boundaries give a sense of security and order.
10. Don't be afraid to try different combinations. Some matches are surprising.
11. Take time often to celebrate your successes (even little ones).
12. Anything worth doing takes time and effort. A great puzzle can't be rushed.
Tuesday, July 05, 2005
"To those of you who laughed at me, thank you.
Without you I wouldn't have cried.
To those of you who just couldn't love me, thank you.
Without you I wouldn't have known real love.
To those of you who hurt my feelings, thank you.
Without you I wouldn't have felt them.
To those of you who left me lonely, thank you.
Without you I wouldn't have discovered myself.
But it is to those of you who thought I couldn't do it;
It is you I thank the most,
Because without you I wouldn't have tried."
Students wished they had a pencil or paper to jot down notes during the speech; some even wished they had a tape recorder. Some members of the faculty found his speech practical, refreshing, and funny!
Butch Jimenez, head of PLDT's media and strategic communications department, delivered this speech at the UP Diliman Class 2003 commencement exercises:
As college students, you're just about to set sail into the real world. As you prepare for the battleground of life, you'll hear many speeches, read tons of books and get miles of advice telling you to work hard, dream big, go out and do something for yourself, and have a vision.
Not bad advice, really. In fact, following these nuggets of truth may just bring you to the top. But as I've lived my life over the years, I have come to realize that it is great to dream big, have a vision, make a name, and work hard. But guess what: There's something better than that.
So my message today simply asks the question, what’s better than...?
Let's start off with something really simple. What's better than a long speech? No doubt, a short one. So, you guys are in luck because I do intend to keep this short.
Now, let me take you through a very simple math exam. I'll rattle off a couple of equations, and you tell me what you observe about them. Be mindful of the instructions. You are to tell me what you observe about the equations.
Here goes: 3+4=7, 9+2=11, 8+4=13, and 6+6=12. Tell me, what do you observe?
Every time I conduct this test, more than 90 percent of the participants immediately say, 8+4 is NOT 13, it's 12!
That's true and they are correct. But they could have also observed that the three other equations were right. That 3+4 is 7, that 9+2 is 11, and that 6+6 is 12.
What's my point? Many people immediately focus on the negative instead of the positive. Most of us focus on what's wrong with other people more than what's right about them. Examine those four equations. Three were right and only one was wrong. But what is the knee-jerk observation? The wrong equation.
If 10 people you didn't know were to walk through that door, most of you would describe those people by what's negative about them. He's fat. He's balding. Oh, the short one. Oh, the skinny girl. Ahhh, 'yung pango. Etc.
Get the point? It's always the negative we focus on and not the positive.
You'll definitely experience this in the corporate world. You do a hundred good things and one mistake-guess what? Chances are, your attention will be called on that one mistake.
So what's better than focusing on the negative? Believe me, its focusing on the positive. And if this world could learn to focus on the positive more than the negative, it would be a much nicer place to live in.
Better than working hard
We have always been told to work hard. Our parents say that, our teachers say that, and our principal says that. But there's something better than merely working hard. It's working SMART.
It's taking time to understand the situation, and coming out with an effective and efficient solution to get more done with less time and effort. As the Japanese say, "There's always a better way."
One of the most memorable case studies I came across with as I studied Japanese management at Sophia University in Tokyo was the case of the empty soap box, which happened in one of Japan's biggest cosmetics companies. The company received a complaint that a consumer had bought a box of soap that was empty. It immediately isolated the problem to the assembly line, which transported all the packaged boxes of soap to the delivery department. For some reason, one soap box went through the assembly line empty.
Management tasked its engineers to solve the problem. Post-haste, the engineers worked hard to devise an X-ray machine with high-resolution monitors manned by two people to watch all the soap boxes that passed through the line to make sure they were not empty. No doubt, they worked hard and they worked fast.
But a rank-and-file employee that was posed the same problem came out with another solution. He bought a strong industrial electric fan and pointed it at the assembly line. He switched the fan on, and as each soap box passed the fan, it simply blew the empty boxes out of the line.
Clearly, the engineers worked hard, but the rank-and-file employee worked smart. So what's better than merely working hard?
It's working smart. Having said that, it is still important to work hard. If you could combine both working hard and working smart, you would possess a major factor toward success.
Better than dreaming big
I will bet my next month's salary that many have encouraged you to dream big. Maybe even to reach for the stars and aim high.
I sure heard that about a million times right before I graduated from this university.
So I did.
I did dream big. I did aim high. I did reach for the stars. No doubt, it works. In fact, the saying is true: "If you aim for nothing, that's exactly what you'll hit: nothing."
But there's something better than dreaming big. Believe me, I got shocked myself. And I learned it from the biggest dreamer of all time, Walt Disney.
When it comes to dreaming big, Walt is the man. No bigger dreams were fulfilled than his. Every leadership book describes him as the ultimate dreamer. In fact, the principle of dreaming and achieving is the core message of the Disney hit song, "When You Wish Upon a Star".
"When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are; anything your heart desires will come to you. If your heart is in your dream, no request is too extreme. When you wish upon a star, as dreamers do,” as Jiminy Cricket sang.
But is that what he preached in the Disney Company?
Well, not exactly. Kinda, but not quite. The problem with dreaming is if that's all you do, you'll really get nowhere. In fact, you may just fall asleep and never wake up.
The secret to Disney's success is not just dreaming, it's IMAGINEERING. You won't find this word in a dictionary. It's purely a Disney word. Those who engage in Imagineering are called imaginers. The word combines the words "imagination" and "engineering."
In the book "Imaginers," Disney's CEO, Michael Eisner, claims that "imaginers turn impossible dreams into real magic."
Walt Disney explained there is really no secret to their approach. They just keep moving forward-opening new doors and doing new things, because they are curious. And it is this curiosity that leads them down new paths. They always dream, explore and experiment. In short, Imagineering is the blending of creative imagination and technical know-how.
Eisner expounds on this thought by saying that "Not only are imaginers curious, they are courageous, outrageous, and their creativity is contagious."
The big difference with imaginers is that they dream and then they DO! So don't just be a dreamer, be an imaginer.
What's better than vision You must have all been given a lecture at one time or another about the importance of having a vision.
Even leadership expert John Maxwell says that an indispensable quality of a leader is to have a vision. The Bible also makes it very clear that "Without vision, people perish." So no doubt about it, having a vision is important to success.
But surprise! There's something more potent than a vision. It's a CAUSE. If all you're doing is trying to reach your vision and you're pitted against someone fighting for a cause, chances are you'll lose.
The Vietnam War is a classic example. Literally with sticks and stones, the Viet Cong beat the heavily armed US Army to surrender, primarily because the US had a vision to win the war, but the Vietnamese were fighting for a cause.
In the realm of business, many leaders have visions of making their company No.1, or grabbing market share, or forever increasing profits.
Nothing really wrong with that vision, but take the example of Sony founder Akio Morita. He did not just have a vision to build the biggest electronics company in the world. In his biography, "Made in Japan," he reveals that the real reason he set up Sony was to help rebuild his country, which had just been battered by war. He had a cause he was fighting for. His vision to be an electronics giant was secondary.
What's the difference between a vision and a cause? Here's what sets them apart... No one is willing to die for a vision.
People will die for a cause. You possess a vision. A cause possesses you. A vision lies in your hands. A cause lies in your heart. A vision involves sacrifice. A cause involves the ultimate sacrifice.
Just a word of caution. You must have the right vision, and you must be fighting for the right cause. In the end, right will always win out.
It may take time, and it may take long. But if you have the right vision and are fighting for the right cause, you will prevail. If not, no matter how sincere you are, if you are not fighting for what is right, you will ultimately fail. The Bible, which says, "To whom much is given, much is required."
Having been given the opportunity to study in UP, no doubt, much has been given to you in terms of an excellent education. Don't forget that in return, much is now required of you to use that education not just for yourself, but for others.
And as you move up and start reaching the pinnacle of success, even more will be required of you to look at the welfare of others, of society and of the country.
A final review:
* What's better than focusing on the negative? Focus on the positive.
* What's better than working hard? It's working smart.
* What's better than dreaming? Imagineering.
* What's better than doing something for you? Doing something for your country.
* What's better than a vision? A cause.
* What's better than a long speech? Definitely, a short one.
Thank you and congratulations, UP Diliman graduating class of 2003
"Excellence is not a destination; it is a continuous journey that never ends."
Confucius answered, "They lose their health to make money and then lose their money to restore their health. By thinking anxiously about the future, they forget the present, such that they live neither for the present nor the future and they live as if they will never die, and they die as if they had never lived....."
Monday, June 27, 2005
Stood first in BA (Hons), Economics, Panjab University, Chandigarh, 1952;
OCCUPATION /Teaching Experience:
Professor (Senior lecturer, Economics, 1957-59;Reader, Economics, 1959-63;
Working Experience/ POSITIONS:
1971-72: Economic advisor, ministry of foreign trade
1972-76: Chief economic advisor, ministry of finance
1976-80: Director, Reserve Bank of India;
November 1976 - April 1980: Secretary, ministry of finance (Department of economic affairs);
April 1980 - September 15, 1982: Member-secretary, Planning Commission
1980-83: Chairman, India Committee of the Indo-Japan joint study committee September 16,
1982-85: Alternate Governor for India, Board of governors, International Monetary Fund
1983-84: Member, economic advisory council to the Prime Minister
1985: President, Indian Economic Association
January 15, 1985- July 31, 1987: Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission
August 1, 1987- November 10, 1990: Secretary-general and commissioner,south commission, Geneva
December 10, 1990- March 14, 1991: Advisor to the Prime Minister on economic affairs
March 15, 1991- June 20, 1991: Chairman, UGC
June 21, 1991- May 15, 1996: Union finance minister
October 1991: Elected to Rajya Sabha from Assam on Congress ticket
June 1995: Re-elected to Rajya Sabha
1996 onwards: Member, Consultative Committee for the ministry of finance
August 1, 1996- December 4, 1997: Chairman, Parliamentary standing committee on commerce
March 21, 1998 onwards: Leader of the Opposition, Rajya Sabha
June 5, 1998 onwards: Member, committee on finance
August 13, 1998 onwards: Member, committee on rules
Aug 1998-2001: Member, committee of privileges 2000 onwards: Member, executive committee, Indian parliamentary group
June 2001: Re-elected to Rajya Sabha
Aug 2001 onwards: Member, general purposes committee
India's Export Trends and Prospects for Self-Sustained Growth-Clarendon Press, Oxford University, 1964;
Adam Smith Prize, University of Cambridge, 1956
Padma Vibhushan, 1987
Euro money Award, Finance Minister of the Year, 1993;
Asia money Award, Finance Minister of the Year for Asia, 1993 and 1994
1966: Economic Affairs Officer
1966-69: Chief, financing for trade section, UNCTAD
1972-74: Deputy for Indiain IMF Committee of Twenty on International Monetary Reform
1977-79: Indian delegation to Aid-India Consortium Meetings
1980-82: Indo-Soviet joint planning group meeting
1982: Indo-Soviet monitoring group meeting
1993: Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting Cyprus 1993: Human Rights World Conference, Vienna
Gymkhana Club, New Delhi;Life Member, India International Centre, New Delhi
Name: Dr Manmohan Singh
DOB: September 26, 1932
Place of Birth: Gah (West Punjab)
Father: S. Gurmukh Singh
Mother: Mrs Amrit Kaur
Married on: September 14, 1958
Wife: Mrs Gursharan Kaur
Children: Three daughters
Our Prime Minister seems to be the most qualified PM all over the world.
Tuesday, June 21, 2005
I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I've ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That's it. No big deal. Just three stories.
It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: "We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?" They said: "Of course." My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.
And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents' savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn't see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn't interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.
It wasn't all romantic. I didn't have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends' rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:
Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn't have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can't capture, and I found it fascinating.
Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.
Thank you all very much.
Wednesday, June 15, 2005
A best practical example to all of us for making our life happier?
A professor began his class by holding up a glass with some water in it. He held it up for all to see & asked the students, "How much do you think this glass weighs?"
"50 gms!" ... "100 gms!" ......"125 gms" ......the students answered.
"I really don't know unless I weigh it," said the professor, "but, my question is: What would happen if I held it up like this for a few minutes?"
"Nothing" the students said.
"Ok what would happen if I held it up like this for an hour?" the professor asked.
"Your arm would begin to ache" said one of the students.
"You're right, now what would happen if I held it for a day?"
"Your arm could go numb, you might have severe muscle stress & paralysis & have to go to hospital for sure!", ventured another student & all the students laughed.
"Very good. But during all this, did the weight of the glass change?", asked the professor.
"Then what caused the arm ache & the muscle stress, and how can I get rid of it?"
Now, the students were puzzled.
"Put the glass down!" said one of the students.
"Exactly!" said the professor." Life's problems are something like this. Hold it for a few minutes in your head & they seem OK. Think of them for a long time & they begin to ache. Hold it even longer & they begin to paralyze you. You will not be able to do anything."
It's important to think of the challenges (problems) in your life, but EVEN MORE IMPORTANT to 'put them down' at the end of every day before you go to sleep. That way, you are not stressed, you wake up every day fresh & strong & can handle any issue, any challenge that comes your way!"
So, as it becomes time for you to leave office or school or college today...
Remember friends: YOU MUST 'PUT THE GLASS DOWN' TODAY!
Monday, June 13, 2005
Sudha Murthy was livid when a job advertisement posted by a Tata company at the institution where she was completing her post graduation stated that "Lady candidates need not apply". She dashed off a post card to JRD Tata, protesting against the discrimination. Following this, Mrs Murthy was called for an interview and she became the first female engineer to work on the shop floor at Telco (now Tata Motors). It was the beginning of an association that would change her life in more ways than one.
THERE are two photographs that hang on my office wall. Everyday when I enter my office I look at them before starting my day. They are pictures of two old people. One is of a gentleman in a blue suit and the other is a black and white image of a man with dreamy eyes and a white beard.
People have often asked me if the people in the photographs are related to me. Some have even asked me, "Is this black and white photo that of a Sufi saint or a religious Guru?" I smile and reply "No, nor are they related to me. These people made an impact on my life. I am grateful to them." "Who are they?" "The man in the blue suit is Bharat Ratna JRD Tata and the black and white photo is of Jamsetji Tata." "But why do you have them in your office?"" You can call it gratitude."
Then, invariably, I have to tell the person the following story. It was a long time ago. I was young and bright, bold and idealistic. I was in the final year of my Master's course in Computer Science at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bangalore, then known as the Tata Institute. Life was full of fun and joy. I did not know what helplessness or injustice meant.
It was probably the April of 1974. Bangalore was getting warm and gulmohars were blooming at the IISc campus. I was the only girl in my postgraduate department and was staying at the ladies' hostel. Other girls were pursuing research in different departments of Science. I was looking forward to going abroad to complete a doctorate in computer science. I had been offered scholarships from Universities in the US. I had not thought of taking up a job in India.
One day, while on the way to my hostel from our lecture-hall complex, I saw an advertisement on the notice board. It was a standard job-requirement notice from the famous automobile company Telco (now Tata Motors). It stated that the company required young, bright engineers, hardworking and with an excellent academic background, etc.
At the bottom was a small line: "Lady candidates need not apply." I read it and was very upset. For the first time in my life I was up against gender discrimination.
Though I was not keen on taking up the job, I saw it as a challenge. I had done extremely well in
academics, better than most of my male peers. Little did I know then that in real life academic excellence is not enough to be successful.
After reading the notice I went fuming to my room. I decided to inform the topmost person in Telco's management about the injustice the company was perpetrating. I got a postcard and started to write, but there was a problem: I did not know who headed Telco. I thought it must be one of the Tatas. I knew JRD Tata was the head of the Tata Group; I had seen his pictures in newspapers (actually, Sumant Moolgaokar was the company's chairman then).
I took the card, addressed it to JRD and started writing. To this day I remember clearly what I wrote.
I posted the letter and forgot about it. Less than 10 days later, I received a telegram stating that I had to appear for an interview at Telco's Pune facility at the company's expense. I was taken aback by the telegram. My hostel mated told me I should use the opportunity to go to Pune free of cost and buy them the famous Pune saris for cheap! I collected Rs 30 each from everyone who wanted a sari. When I look back, I feel like laughing at the reasons for my going, but back then they seemed good enough to make the trip.
It was my first visit to Pune and I immediately fell in love with the city. To this day it remains dear to me. I feel as much at home in Pune as I do in Hubli, my hometown. The place changed my life in so many ways.
As directed, I went to Telco's Pimpri office for the interview. There were six people on the panel and I realised then that this was serious business. "This is the girl who wrote to JRD," I heard somebody whisper as soon as I entered the room. By then I knew for sure that I would not get the job. The realisation abolished all fear from my mind, so I was rather cool while the interview was being conducted.
Even before the interview started, I reckoned the panel was biased, so I told them, rather impolitely, "I hope this is only a technical interview." They were taken aback by my rudeness, and even today I am ashamed about my attitude.
The panel asked me technical questions and I answered all of them. Then an elderly gentleman with an affectionate voice told me, "Do you know why we said lady candidates need not apply? The reason is that we have never employed any ladies on the shop floor. This is not a co-ed college; this is a factory. When it comes to academics, you are a first ranker throughout.
We appreciate that, but people like you should work in research laboratories."
I was a young girl from small-town Hubli. My world had been a limited place. I did not know the ways of large corporate houses and their difficulties, so I answered, "But you must start somewhere, otherwise no woman will ever be able to work in your factories."
Finally, after a long interview, I was told I had been successful. So this was what the future had in store for me. Never had I thought I would take up a job in Pune. I met a shy young man from Karnataka there, we became good friends and we got married.
It was only after joining Telco that I realised who JRD was: the uncrowned king of Indian industry. Now I was scared, but I did not get to meet him till I was transferred to Bombay. One day I had to show some reports to Mr Moolgaokar, our chairman, who we all knew as SM. I was in his office on the first floor of Bombay House (the Tata headquarters) when, suddenly JRD walked in. That was the first time I saw "appro JRD". Appro means "our" in Gujarati. This was the affectionate term by which people at Bombay House called him.
I was feeling very nervous, remembering my postcard episode. SM introduced me nicely, "Jeh (that's what his close associates called him), this young woman is an engineer and that too a postgraduate. She is the first woman to work on the Telco shop floor." JRD looked at me. I was praying he would not ask me any questions about my interview (or the postcard that preceded it). Thankfully, he didn't. Instead, he remarked. "It is nice that girls are getting into engineering in our country. By the way, what is your name?" "When I joined Telco I was Sudha Kulkarni, ir," I replied. "Now I am Sudha Murthy." He smiled and kindly smile and started a discussion with SM. As for me, I almost ran out of the room.
After that I used to see JRD on and off. He was the Tata Group chairman and I was merely an engineer. There was nothing that we had in common. I was in awe of him.
One day I was waiting for Murthy, my husband, to pick me up after office hours. To my surprise I saw JRD standing next to me. I did not know how to react. Yet again I started worrying about that postcard. Looking back, I realise JRD had forgotten about it. It must have been a small incident for him, but not so for me.
"Young lady, why are you here?" he asked. "Office time is over." I said, "Sir, I'm waiting for my husband to come and pick me up." JRD said, "It is getting dark and there's no one in the corridor. I'll wait with you till your husband comes." I was quite used to waiting for Murthy, but having JRD waiting alongside made me extremely uncomfortable.
I was nervous. Out of the corner of my eye I looked at him. He wore a simple white pant and shirt. He was old, yet his face was glowing. There wasn't any air of superiority about him. I was thinking, "Look at this person. He is a chairman, a well-respected man in our country and he is waiting for the sake of an ordinary employee."
Then I saw Murthy and I rushed out. JRD called and said, "Young lady, tell your husband never to make his wife wait again."
In 1982 I had to resign from my job at Telco. I was reluctant to go, but I really did not have a choice. I was coming down the steps of Bombay House after wrapping up my final settlement when I saw JRD coming up. He was absorbed in thought. I wanted to say goodbye to him, so I stopped. He saw me and paused.
Gently, he said, "So what are you doing, Mrs Kulkarni?" (That was the way he always addressed me.) "Sir, I am leaving Telco." "Where are you going?" he asked. "Pune, Sir. My husband is starting a company called Infosys and I'm shifting to Pune." "Oh! And what will you do when you are successful." "Sir, I don't know whether we will be successful." "Never start with diffidence," he advised me. "Always start with confidence. When you are successful you must give back to society. Society gives us so much; we must reciprocate. I wish you all the best." Then JRD continued walking up the stairs. I stood there for what seemed like a millennium. That was the last time I saw him alive.
Many years later I met Ratan Tata in the same Bombay House, occupying the chair JRD once did. I told him of my many sweet memories of working with Telco. Later, he wrote to me, "It was nice hearing about Jeh from you. The sad part is that he's not alive to see you today."
I consider JRD a great man because, despite being an extremely busy person, he valued one postcard written by a young girl seeking justice. He must have received thousands of letters everyday. He could have thrown mine away, but he didn't do that. He respected the intentions of that unknown girl, who had neither influence nor money, and gave her an opportunity in his company. He did not merely give her a job; he changed her life and mindset forever.
Close to 50 per cent of the students in today's engineering colleges are girls. And there are women on the shop floor in many industry segments.
I see these changes and I think of JRD. If at all time stops and asks me what I want from life, I would say I wish JRD were alive today to see how the company we started has grown. He would have enjoyed it wholeheartedly.
My love and respect for the House of Tata remains undiminished by the passage of time. I always looked up to JRD. I saw him as a role model for his simplicity, his generosity, his kindness and the care he took of his employees. Those blue eyes always reminded me of the sky; they had the same vastness and magnificence.
Sudha Murthy is a widely published writer and chairperson of the Infosys Foundation involved in a number of social development initiatives. Infosys chairman Narayan Murthy is her husband.
Article sourced from: Lasting Legacies (Tata Review-Special Commemorative Issue 2004), brought out by the house of Tatas to commemorate the 100th birth anniversary of JRD Tata on July 29, 2004
1. An old lady who looks as if she is about to die.
Which one would you choose to offer a ride to, knowing that there could only be one passenger in your car?
Think before you continue reading............................This is a moral/ethical dilemma that was once actually used as part of a job application. You could pick up the old lady,because she is going to die, and thus you should save her first. Or you could take the old friend because he once saved your life, and this would be the perfect chance to pay him back. However, you may never be able to find your perfect mate again
1. There is a man who lives on the top floor of a very tall building. Everyday he gets the elevator down to the ground floor to leave the building to go to work. Upon returning from work though, he can only travel half way up in the lift and has to walk the rest of the way unless it's raining! Why?
2. A man and his son are in a car accident. The father dies on the scene, but the child is rushed to the hospital. When he arrives the surgeon says, "I can't operate on this boy, he is my son!" How can this be?
3. A man is wearing black. Black shoes, socks, trousers, coat, gloves and ski mask. He is walking down a back street with all the street lamps off. A black car is coming towards him with its light off but somehow manages to stop in time. How did the driver see the man?
4. One day Kerry celebrated her birthday. Two days later her older twin brother, Terry, celebrated his birthday. How?
5. Why is it better to have round manhole covers than square ones? This is logical rather than lateral, but it is a good puzzle that can be solved by lateral thinking techniques. It is supposedly used by a very well-known software company as an interview question for prospective employees.
6. A man went to a party and drank some of the punch. He then left early. Everyone else at the party who drank the punch subsequently died of poisoning. Why did the man not die?
7. A man died and went to Heaven. There were thousands of other people there. They were all naked and all looked as they did at the age of 21. He looked around to see if there was anyone he recognized. He saw a couple and he knew immediately that they were Adam and Eve. How did he know?
8. A woman had two sons who were born on the same hour of the same day of the same year. But they were not twins. How could this be so?
9. A man walks into a bar and asks the barman for a glass of water. The barman pulls out a gun and points it at the man. The man says 'Thank you' and walks out. This puzzle claims to be the best of the genre. It is simple in its statement, absolutely baffling and yet with a completely satisfying solution. Most people struggle very hard to solve this one yet they like the answer when they hear it or have the satisfaction of figuring it out.
10. A murderer is condemned to death. He has to choose between three rooms. The first is full of raging fires, the second is full of assassins with loaded guns, and the third is full of lions that haven't eaten in 3 years. Which room is safest for him?
11. A woman shoots her husband. Then she holds him under water for over 5 minutes. Finally, she hangs him. But 5 minutes later they both go out together and enjoy a wonderful dinner together. How can this be?
12. There are two plastic jugs filled with water. How could you put all of this water into a barrel, without using the jugs or any dividers, and still tell which water came from which jug?
13. What is black when you buy it, red when you use it, and gray when you throw it away?
14. Can you name three consecutive days without using the words Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday? (or day names in any other language)
15. This is an unusual paragraph. I'm curious how quickly you can find out what is so unusual about it. It looks so plain you would think nothing was wrong with it. In fact, nothing is wrong with it! It is unusual though. Study it, and think about it, but you still may not find anything odd. But if you work at it a bit, you might find out.
The solutions are below. Don't be lazy. Try hard to figure these out before you look!
2. The surgeon was his mother.
6. The poison in the punch came from the ice cubes. When the man drank the punch, the ice was fully frozen. Gradually it melted, poisoning the punch.
7. He recognized Adam and Eve as the only people without navels. Because they were not born of women, they had never had umbilical cords and therefore they never had navels. This one seems perfectly logical but it can sometimes spark fierce theological arguments. (Just what a HUMOR listneeds!!) ;^)
8. They were two of a set of triplets (or quadruplets, etc.). This puzzle stumps many people. They try outlandish solutions involving test-tube babies or surrogate mothers. Why does the brain search for complex solutions when there is a much simpler one available?
9. The man had hiccups. The barman recognized this from his speech and drew the gun in order to give him a shock. It worked and cured the hiccups--so the man no longer needed the water. The is a simple puzzle to state but a difficult one to solve. It is a perfect example of a seemingly irrational and incongruous situation having a simple and complete explanation. Amazingly this classic puzzle seems to work in different cultures and languages.
10. The third. Lions that haven't eaten in three years are dead.
13. The answer is Charcoal.
6. Because he was the one who put the poison in the punch. Of course he wouldn't drink any *after* he poisoned it. Who goes to the effort of making poison ice cubes, except Bond villains and those bad guys in the "Encyclopedia Brown" mystery stories we read in elementary school?