Please let me know if you have any questions

Please let me know if you have any questions

How innocent this statement looks but don’t sink in to the deception, I will assist you to be aware of the ramifications that this statement may lead to. Having worked in IT industry for enough long years, I’ve acquired the tacit cognizance not only to read in between the lines of emails but also to penetrate into it and sectumsempra the whole thing to extract the intended insinuation.

Well, after having composed and in the process of composing oodles of corporate emails to immediate bosses, clients, users, teams, alien teams and acquaintances sitting oceans far away or as close as in the next cubicle, I had to admit that, the monotony of this phrase is more nuzzled than the mere obligation of it. Every time I finish composing an email, I feel something is missing in the whole email draft and suddenly realize that, the parting shot misses the most worshipped phrase ‘Please let me know if you have any questions’ and so I diligently type it out at the end of the body which gives a sense of completeness to the email, like that of the holy ‘Thachi Mammu’ at the end of a heavy South Indian meal.

Few use this statement just for the sake of it. Few use it just to sound concerned. Few use it to feel complete (Complete Man – Raymond’s!). Few use it just to be careful and get a feeling of being in the crowd and not left out. Only few choose to know the real meaning of it and act accordingly.

Though this invites ‘further communication’ from the recipient, sometimes it doesn’t invite at all. When your manager sends an email with such a parting shot, some choose to stick to ‘I don’t have any questions’ mode to avoid any repercussion of their flushed out eccentricities. Some actually have things to say and so they immediately run their fingers on the keyboard as if running it against one’s girlfriend’s contours, ramming the keyboard to an extent that the keys go weak in their knees and beg your sympathy, shedding copious amount of audible tears. These species never fail to end their reply with the same blessed phrase of, ‘Ohh please god damn, let me know, if you gosh have, any freaking questions!’

This gets so monotonous at some point of time that you actually choose to ignore this and end the email blatantly with main content. You feel so bored even to take questions from the other end. Sometimes, it will be so boring day that, you actually wish no one comes back with any questions. You may want to keep the tone of the email as concerned as possible but ignoring this phrase might end up as if you are not so involved in the task at hand. So you invariably end up putting that phrase at the end of the email and silently pray all Gods one by one wishing the recipients to be as lazy as you. Some strategically compose such emails towards the end of the day, and press the button SEND SEND SEND for each draft consecutively in quick succession… like pressing the trigger of the MG3 7.62mm machine gun so that they don’t have to wait for the reply and can always check the next day.

Sometimes, the content of the email would be so small but still people prefer to make it wholesome with this phrase.

Sample this,


Hi Ben,
The report is sent.
Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thanks & Regards,
Hey I am the Please-let-me-know-if-you-have-any-questions lover

Yes I admit, this phrase can be email filler. It makes the email appear as if the content is huge and it is trying to convey quite a lot of information sarcastically.  So the above email with the phrase can connote:

Hey Ben, Hope you received the crappy report which you asked me to send. Dude, this gotta be crazy, it’s just a simple report which you might have generated yourself. It’s just two minutes of effing mouse click and I gotta log this task in my timesheet since you had sent it to me. I would have probably grabbed an ‘Egg Puff’ in the pantry by the time I logged into the ftp client sitting at the remote machine or rather I would have taken two three sips of Bru coffee with the Sunfeast Marie Light Oats Biscuit.

Anyway, don’t get back to me with any sorta questions or whatever. Do ping me, if am free I’ll reply. I gotta go. Ciao!

Got that?

Well, it does convey such deep meanings in a single line.

In other cases some dread the usage of such phrase during critical times.


Hi <the-most-admired-person>,

As discussed two centuries back (Read – two days back), I’ll be on leave till Tuesday.

Please let me know if you have any questions. (*Sincerely prays God and touches black color while typing this email which would evade all evil eyes and brings good luck*)

Thanks & Regards,
Hey I am afraid to use Please-let-me-know-if-you-have-any-questions dude.

People dread this phrase I say. What if your boss changes the mind and only because you have mentioned ‘Please let me know if you have any questions’, he/she gets back to you with – ‘Well, can you cut down your leave by a day and be back to office by Monday?’. In order to avoid all such ill fate, few gallop away from this dreadful phrase and try not to make it more obvious to get back to them.

This statement has gained corporate attention, since it conveys quite a lot of emotions than a Kathak dancer!


Hi <some-poor-fella>

I cannot approve your release as the metrics in the DOSA dashboard cannot reach 201% compliance without your humble presence. Innovation in the lines of Ghee Dosa, Onion Rava would go bleak if you don’t make yourself available before the dough kneading Tool.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thanks,
Parotta Master


This dreadful phrase in the above email conveys some simple things without being explicitly declared. First, dude you are screwed, trash your release request. Second, how can you get released when you are the only one taking care of this DOSA module? Having an IDLI person for a DOSA can lead to change in the DOSA parameters which can affect the quality of the deliverables. And finally, now I think you don’t have any questions to ask!

Indigenous use of this phrase has made oneself more competent in the lines of the prudent usage of this phrase. Some acquire this skill to use it at the right time. Six Sigma Green Belt Certifications are not necessary to master the technique of such usage. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar who preaches ‘Art of living’ has decided to impart this niche skill to everyone in his spiritual masses.

I also notice that this ‘Please let me know if you have any questions’ culture has deeply penetrated into the young minds and they have started believing that it is some sort of customary ritual that is being followed in the project. They have started appending it to every other email they are sending out. It becomes the email mantra. They chant this at the end of every email.

Lastly I heard from one of my friends that, someone made a blasphemous use of this statement and it was being circulated only among the near and dear ones in the company in the form of forward emails.

The email read:


(Names have been changed to protect the identity & dignity of the email sender)

Dear <sincere-girl-who-works-in-my-project>,

Many more happy returns of the day!

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thanks & Regards,
Very-Very-Very-Busy-Boss


Alright, so I have decided to create an e-learning material on this industry buzz phrase which will be of greater help for the freshers and laterals who join the company. I hope I made myself clear.

Please let me know if you have any questions!

Thanks & Reg….Ohhh sigh! Cut the crap!

Chalo then. Bubye!

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Drifting away!

Have you ever noticed that the life is just drifting away slowly leaving you behind in some sort of confused and ever nagging loneliness? This feeling starts hitting you when you miss your friends, friends who have been your part and parcel of your life, with whom you have spent all your time and one day they all are gone away and you are left alone to your self. You get to meet new people with whom you are forced to make friendship or sometimes it just happens due to similarity in thoughts or due to interactions that makes it necessary to extend the hands of friendship. Well everyone will have to pass through this situation. You become so nostalgic and would subject oneself to constant rewinding of past incidents through photos stored in your hard disks or videos taken in your mobile phones.

The sheer thoughts about your college days brings back the hero in you. The days spent with friends keep flashing in your mind and your mind starts drifting itself into its past. Friends always stay near you at some point of time. You hang out with them, talk with them, go for trips, treats and eat outs. This creates an itch in your mind that keeps itching you, making you addicted to them. You start loving their company and  would want to meet them as frequently as possible. This is just like a recursion logic that keeps calling itself until one day it finds a condition to terminate that loop. Life also provides such conditions for people.

As I’ve already said in my previous post about “moving on” in life. So the life keeps moving on and so are the people in our lives. Many of them change company, some change the country. This happens one by one with the people in our lives, leaving you stranded in a lonely island full of new people. You miss their calls, messages. The numbers stored in your mobile phone’s contact list becomes obsolete one by one and each one of them gets removed from the “fwd msg” distribution list. The local number becomes a national one and the national number sometimes becomes a Skye contact. You have to depend on Gtalk, Skype and various other social networking medium to contact them and talk with them.

You slowly realise that, you are growing up and your are somewhere in the mid twenties. All college and school students become “kids” and you hate people shouting and chatting loudly in the buses. Group talk becomes nuisance and you prefer silence in the buses and cars. You prefer plugging into some iPod or mp3 players and listen to music rather than having a talk with someone sitting beside you. You realise that you have conversed so loudly and laughed so much in the bus when you were with your best buddies and everyone sitting around you turned and gave a cheap stare at you. Now that you have become one among them staring at loudly talking people. You have become a “Grownup”!!

One day, you realise that all your friends who joined with you in the company you are working, have left one by one and you have to remove them from the official instant messaging list. Their official email ID becomes obsolete and you practically understand that when you receive a message from the postmaster with the subject “Failure Delivery – Couldn’t find the address or mailbox doesn’t exists”. Friends are a major part of our lives. We spend time with them and share almost everything with them – likes, dislikes, food, money and even crushes. Our mind is reluctant to accept the fact that, we cannot be always with them. We have to move on.

Life keeps us busier always with something or the other. First its the school where we made friends. Later we finished schooling, wrote slam books, shared contact number and email IDs. Then we joined college, again made friends, had lot of fun, shared our lives in and out in classrooms, canteens, labs, mukku kadai-s and in hostels and mess. But we never felt the distance anytime. Even when we get jobs and start working, we keep in touch with them though forward messages, group mails, weekend meet-ups and movies. But when the life gets more busier, we find less time for all that. Weekends becomes “Dorm-ing days”. We sleep, sleep and sleep out of hectic-ness that has crept into our life. Everyone becomes busy. Some move on for higher studies and some change jobs and some get married. Your friends circle shrinks its diameter and at one point of time it becomes a straight line.

Friends at work come to your rescue. Again you start living with a new circle of friends and this time the diameter keeps increasing and you again start enjoying your time with the friends. Chatting with them for long, hanging out in the weekends, movies and much more. You even find your girl. In-spite of such new relationships, you enjoy being with your friends. Life moves swiftly with college friends at one side and your work friends on the other side.

One fine day, you find your job sucks big time and you desperately want a change. A change that will bring a big change in your life. You think about it and finally make a decision to change your job. Fiasco sets in and you start missing all your friends again. You are not just changing your job but altogether moving away from all of them with whom you have been with, for the part years. Now that you are losing your own official mail ID which you have acquired long back and to which your inbox gets flooded with heaps of “Forward mails”. Again you become sentimental. You curse God for making you missing friends. You leave and find a new job. Now you find yourself stranded in a place of unknown people. You find everything new. you have to get accustomed to new way of living and working. You miss your old cubicle and your company. You start saying “It wasn’t the way it is here…”. You envy on people who hangs out in gangs and laughs out loud (Yea the same LOL!). You are just left to yourself. You have to eat your breakfast and lunch in the food courts alone. You don’t know where to keep the soiled plates. You don’t know in which counter you have to get the ordered item in the FC. You consciously walk towards the hand wash area. You realise that people around you are staring at you with the “just joined” or “new guy here” looks. *Sigh* what a comfort zone I’ve created for myself and now I’ve come out of it. You have to make new friends again.

You again wish for all your old companions. You see everyone is worried about their families. You see all your colleagues talking about their son or daughter. You are put into constant speculation about things around and about yourself. You are not the one you were some two or three years before. You find yourself still worrying about your friends. You then realise that you have to start worrying about yourself. You have to start working towards supporting yourself. You are a grown up now. You are no more a kid or immature just-out-of-college guy. No one likes your SMS, few likes them very much and asks you, “Why didn’t you send any messages. I was waiting for them”. You laugh at yourself. You still have hopes to be a kiddish, carefree, lazy, sleepy immature boy. You keep reminding yourself of not to become one of those serious, worried and always complaining jerks. You still remain a happy, friendly, always-smiling, humorous chap who would want to be open with everyone you meet in your life and create an interesting chapter of them. You make new friends and keep adding them to your “Besshht Friendssss” list.

Life is just drifting away. There is no time for hatred, jealous or regrets. Keep yourself open and welcome everyone. Love them all till you find friendship and love everywhere around you and you are fully drenched on it.

Thank you all my friends for becoming a good chapter in the pages of my book. You are “THE BEST”. You have made my life worthy and cherishable. “Hello” to all my future friends who would start making an entry into my pages of my life. Welcoming you all.

Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional.  ~Chili Davis

Be cheerful and love all!!

Short Story: The Sign

“Yes mom, I’m coming home, I’ve taken a week’s off. So I’ll stay there, Yes…OK. See ya” I pressed the End-Call button. After a long time, I’m going back home. Work has ruined my personal life badly. I never found time for any other activity apart from slouching in front of the monitor staring at the chunks of codes. I had informed my manager about my leave. I packed my bags and started towards the station.

I did not book the train tickets, so I had to leave for hometown in the unreserved compartment. The worst part is I have to switch two trains to reach my place. I was wondering if I’ve to go for such an option. I could have very booked the tickets later, but I was so desperate to go home.

I reached the station at 9.30 PM. The station was still crowded. The people are swarming here and there. The train had already arrived. The announcement said that the train number 6203 Mumbai superfast express is going to depart in another 15 minutes.

Click to read the rest of the story –> Continue reading

Short Story: Crazy Simi

Prologue

Girls are crazy sometimes. I don’t want to make any general statements as I do not want to earn hatred from girls who are reading this.

I’m going to talk about a girl who wanted to be a guy!

She really did not mean it. But she simply wanted to be a guy because that may alleviate her from small troubles that she faces with the world around her.

***

The Chat

But seriously, if u write too much no one will have time to read and they may not know that u r leaving….” I pinged her.

She was a great blogger who writes real life incidents in an interesting way. All that amused her, impressed her, the things which made her weep, the ones which made her embarrassed, she writes everything. Life is to live and to learn things. And the best part is to share things. The late night talks with roomies with black coffee and tea. The daily late night TV remote wars and the all time menace due to unscrupulous maintenance of water supplies in the apartment which few girls share in Pune.

***

Click the “Read more…” link below to read the rest of the story

Continue reading

Short Story: I dont wanna miss you

It was a Saturday evening.

A group of children were playing in the park making noises that hit the nearby houses. They were enjoying the Saturday evening to the core. No studies, no homework, no exams. What else children need these days? An hour of sleep, lots of time to play and enjoy.

65 year old Vasudevan was sitting in the bench and was keenly watching the kids playing cricket, in the park situated nearby Mercy Oldage Home. He was in his white dhoti and well pressed khadi pyjama which has been donated by Khadi Gramodyog Bhavan to all the senior citizens of the Mercy Home. The walking stick, which never parts from him, was lying beside him. He was here by his own decision.

He could see two kids fighting in the crowd of children playing see-saw. A flabby obese child was hit by another one who is thin and weak to his age. He could barely lift the cricket bat which was lying on the ground. The scene of the weak tiny boy who keeps hitting the obese child disturbed him. Vasudevan was very much tired for his age and in his life. The small boy’s mischievousness was at the peak. He constantly hits the obese kid with the bat and this plump kid never retorts back. After few more hitting, both of them leave the place and this flabby kid walks towards the bench.

Vasu seeing him coming, calls the obese kid.

“Hey you. Come here dear”

Hearing those words, the boy turns his side and comes running towards him.

“What is your name?”, Vasu asked him softly bearing a light smile in his face.

“Deepak” came the reply.

“Deepak, why do you play with that naughty boy who keeps hitting you always? Why don’t you hit him back so that he never shows his mischievousness to you?

Deepak replied, “I play with him because; others don’t include me in the games. They don’t allow me in their group because I’m fat. I look ugly. My dress is tight and they hate playing with me. Aswin plays with me even though I’m fat. He is the only one who accepts me as a friend. If I hit him back he’ll too leave me. After all his the only one I’ve, to play with me. I don’t wanna miss him”

Saying this he hurriedly left running towards the park gate.

Deepak’s words stirred Vasudevan’s thoughts.

***

A week back in his own house, he shouted at his son Krishnan, who was assistant manager in an elevator company managing the finance and accounts.

“I’m leaving this house”, Vasudevan’s voice reverberated the 3BHK flat which Krishnan bought a month ago. “I cannot stay with him who doesn’t have any respect to his father. I’m leaving”

“Father, it’s you who happily gave away the important file containing the account statements to waste paperwala. You know how important that document is? I had worked day and night to prepare that report and it was due submission. I had to ask another day to prepare it again and submit it back. It is the only reason, I spoke harshly to you. Why are you leaving us for this?”

“No whatever reason you give me, I’m not in a mood to accept it. I need respect. When it is not available here, I’m not staying here. See you”. Vasudevan packed his bags and left the house and he is now here in the Mercy home for the past one month. Krishnan’s effort to make his father stay back went in vain. He was helpless.

***

Someone knocked the door early in the morning. When Krishnan opened the door he was surprised to see his father back home. Vasudevan quietly entered the house and entered silently into his room and sat in his chair. Krishnan could not say anything. He wanted to talk to his dad. But he did not want to hurt him saying anything. He wanted his father to rest. He was in tears out of the happiness that filed his heart seeing his father back home after a month from the Mercy home.

Krishnan was getting ready for the day’s work and was hurrying as usual to his office. He left home hurriedly seeing his father asleep in his room.

By the time he reached his Office, he got a call from his manager.

“Krishnan, please bring the audit report which we prepared yesterday. Hope you reviewed it at home as you said”

“Yesss Sir…I’ll be there in a minute”. When the receiver was placed down, he realized that he had left the file at home. “Oh my God…today again in hurry I left the file back at home”. He quickly made another call to his manager and informed that he need some time and he’ll be back in 5 minutes.

“Oh yes. No problem Krishnan. Take your time. Come to my cabin after 5 minutes”, Manager replied and put the receiver down.

By the time he was about to start home. Krishnan received another call from reception.

“Mr. Krishnan, someone is waiting for you in the lobby”

“Yes I’ll be there in a minute”

“Thank you Sir” the call ended.

Who wants to see me now? I want to get that file from Home immediately. Shall I ask him to come another day and discuss? Thinking all this he got down the stairs and reached the lobby in search of the person who has come to meet him.

***

Krishnan approached the reception and the lady pointed her pen towards the couch. It was a fraction of time Krishnan took, turning to the direction the receptionist pointed, to see Vasudevan sitting in the couch, with a file in his hand, along with a flabby kid who was holding a football, sitting beside him. His heart was heavy with melancholy.

“Father….” He said. He was not able to talk. His throat was choked out of happiness of seeing his father.

Krishnan could not control his feelings. He burst out in tears and came towards him and fell on his father’s feet.

Vasudevan spoke, “Krishnan, here is the file which you forgot to take with you, this morning. Amma gave this to me to handover this to you. Hope this is so something important for you today. I don’t wanna miss you”

P.S: This is a thought expressed by my colleague. He wanted those thoughts to be written in some form of story and I’ve tried my best to put it here in a story as narrated by him.