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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Chp 280. Sweet December 2009!


Recession. The very word itself is enough to drown you in endless waves of horrifying nightmares and sleepless nights.

But we survived. And we had an unforgettable experience paddling through this phase. Of course there were casualties along the way and there was a 15% pay cut. But eventually, things bounced back to normal and we’re now alive and kicking, ready to storm the world with renewed vigor and zest.

There were a lot of ups and downs this year, but this December’s definitely my most memorable month.

It’s really hard for me to point out everything, so I will just briefly list out my top five favorite moments of this month.

illusionaire’s top 5 december moments



The TEHELKA feature!

If you had bought the December 19th to 26th TEHELKA issue, you would have probably seen me!

TEHELKA The Game Changers 2000 | 2009

Tehelka published an issue called “The game changers 2000 - 2009” of India during this past decade. They covered various fields like sports, music, cinema, politics, economy, religion etc. It was truly an honor to be listed under “desi blogger” category as one of the game changers of India!

Tehelka featuring Kima
[Click pic for larger size]

What made this incident even more honorable and unforgettable was that, among all the game changers, only a few names were directly mentioned. Those were – Mahendra Singh Dhoni, The Ambani brothers, Narendra Modi, Baba Ramdev, Mamata Banerjee, John Abraham, Ekta Kapoor, Manmohan Singh, Aamir Khan, Sonia Gandhi, and Meeeeeee!

Thank you once again, dear Tehelka. To be a fan of a magazine is one thing. But to see myself featured on my favorite magazine is a complete new high.


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Being no.1 in India, again.

On December 16th, Brand Equity Ad Agency Reckoner 2009 rated us as the number one digital agency in India, for the second year in a row! That was immediately followed by wild parties and celebrations at our Mumbai and Delhi offices. We totally killed our competitors, and trust me, it was definitely not a piece of cake retaining our title.

webchutney no.1 digital agency in India

(Webchutney is the) best digital agency in terms of creative & strategic solutions, knowledge of and investment in most effective technologies, quality & talent of people to address brand problems using technology, give solutions across digital spectrum and provide higher return on digital media investment.

- Brand Equity.


Staying up till 3 in the morning, working overtime almost every day, and thinking only about our projects and campaigns even when we’re at our most “intimate moments” with our loved one – yeah, that’s what webchutney people are made of.

From all my experiences here at webchutney, all I can say is we have a hell lot of amazing bosses managing and guiding us along the way. None of those “boss from hell” or “boss you wanna strangle” you’ve read so much about. Things are completely different over here.

Here are a few pics of our celebration. Mumbai office booked two entire floors of “Hawaiian Shack” while Delhi office had an even bigger party.


[Delhi webchutney 1]


[Delhi webchutney 2]


[Mumbai webchutney]

More Mumbai party pics available here: Rahil’s picasa

Read more about the non-stop parties at our blog: webchutney.org

Here’s a funny cheeky l’il clip: Why webchutney shouldn’t be no.1 digital agency.




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Social Media hits a new high!

Many people still cannot fathom the power of social media. Apart from brands reaching out to consumers and expanding their market share, it can also bring you closer to so many people you stand no chance of having an interaction with in real life.

Through twitter I’ve chatted and discussed about various topics with people like Barkha Dutt, Gul Panag, Shashi Tharoor etc. I’ve had personal interactions with other famous celebrities on various other platforms, all thanks to social media.

And the moment such celebrities take a few minutes off from their hectic life to go one-on-one with you, you know you’re not just another fish in the sea vying for their attention.

For me, the greatest feeling I got this month was when Francesca Chiara not only accepted my friend invitation on Facebook but also replied to my messages!!!!

You may not know her, but to me, she’s my goddess divine. She’s the vocalist of the band “The LoveCrave”, and words cannot express how crazy I am about this band.



This band isn’t one of those sopranic / mezzo-sopranic / operatic gothic metal I usually listen to. Wiki describes their band as a gothic rock band with a mix of 80’s hard rock, metal, darkwave and electro-pop. The perfect fusion for my taste. If you are a fan of the aforementioned genres, do listen to their songs. You’ll fall head over heels in love with them.

Currently, the band is my most listened band on my last.fm profile! Their lyrics are quite similar to “Theatres des vampires” but their styles definitely aren’t. Their songs are heavily influenced by vampire cult but at the same time, they managed to bring out that 80’s era kinda music.

So imagine my elation when Francesca accepted my friend request and replied after I told her not many people here in India listen to their kinda music…

ahahahaha that's ok Kima! That means that you will be the boss of our huge fan club when we will sell millions of records hahahah!!!
Thanks so much and take care,

hugs
Francesca++


HEAVEN!!!!

Here is my favorite song of theirs – “Vampires”




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Bringing HOME right here to Mumbai!

My mom and niece spent some quality time with me and my sis here in Mumbai from 26th December to 30th. I couldn’t ask for a bigger X’mas gift! The last time I spent this season with mom away from Mizoram was in the year 1998 when she came down to Chennai and made me slog like hell for my 12th standard exams

It was the first time my niece came to Mumbai too, and she was shit scared to sit in the autos. Mum too kept poking the auto driver and told him to drive slower. lolz.

My sister took Monday off to show them around the city, and on Tuesday it was my turn to take casual leave from work and show them around Mumbai. I’ve never felt more gratified.

Made my niece taste “authentic” chinese food and pizzas for the first time, and she hated them. lolz. And of course mom still couldn’t believe we would spend more than 1 grand on a “decent” dinner at a “decent” restaurant in Mumbai. Times are a changing indeed.

My cousin Saii, the IAS officer, too came and spent X’mas with us. She was her usual self, bringing even her toothpaste to our house as if we didn’t have one, just like old times. All in all, it was one happy X’mas reunion.

On 29th December, my father’s side of the family (yes, did you know I’m from the Hrahsel clan?) had a huge family reunion in Mizoram, aptly called “Zabanga thlahte Nite” (Zabanga is my paternal granpa). My cousins released a book about all the offspring of Zabanga (more than 100 so far) and on the acknowledgment was my name along with my cousin’s!

Yeah I’ve been doing a small project during the past one year, collecting the names and other information of all our cousins and nephews/nieces. Its one huge family scattered all over the city, so my cousin Sangtea (Mimi’s bro) continued the project. Eventually, we got all the names and they threw the reunion party two days ago where they released the book, which supposedly was a big hit.


Images from Mimi hrahsel. On the bottom left are the oldest and youngest direct descendant of Granpa Zabanga.

Here is me raising my glass to all the Hrahsels out there. Cheers!


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Old friends are forever. Screw diamonds.

This month, I got to meet two old friends of mine in Mumbai.

First there was Tommy, one of my closest friends from IIMB. Read my 2004 – 2005 blog entries and you will find a lot about him. He came down to Mumbai from London on 27th December, so me and Amol met him at Pop Tate’s. The last time we saw each other was like, 4 years ago, when he got placed at Barclays UK and left for work immediately. He hadn’t changed one bit and we had so much fun catching up and reminiscing about our wild IIMB escapades.

We watched the Arsenal – Aston Villa LIVE match on the giant screen and it sure felt good to win 3-0.



The place was filled with hardcore Gunners fans and I vaguely remember getting into a fight with a couple of ManUtd supporters (The ManUtd – Hull match was next)


And then, another friend from Delhi – Ben, came to Mumbai on the 23rd.

Yeah, that was when the death metal fan in me came alive.

Ben (Reuben) is the drummer of “IIIrd Sovereign” one of India’s hottest death metal bands. Meeting Ben, Benja, Vedant and Vicky after so many years definitely rekindled some of the flames that had long died down.

They came to Mumbai to perform at POWERCHORDS ’09, India’s most happening and definitely most extreme death metal concert, organized by S.I.E.S College of Arts, Science and Commerce, Mumbai.


[ Source: Facebook Powerchords 09 ]


[ Source: Niksphotography ]


The performers were Atmosfear, Devoid, Infernal Wrath, IIIrd Sovereign and Kryptos. And I had a backstage pass so I got to mingle with all the band members! FTW.



Never had I head-banged that much in a long long time. I had a freaking hoarse throat the entire next day!


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So I guess this month’s top 5 moments bring this year to a fantastic end. Memorable, yet looking forward to making next year even more memorable. Here is me wishing all of you a very happy New Year and hope you don’t do anything stupid like making a New Year resolution. Lolz. Cheers and keep the faith.





31 comments:

VaiVa said...

Happy New Year!!!! Thil hlui te chu an ral ta :P

illusionaire said...

Eka, i rawn kal dawn em zanin? i phone i "delh chhe" daih sia, engtin nge ka rawn call ang che?

Sekibuhchhuak said...

I thawhrimna lawmman i hmuh-ah ka lawmpui a che. Kumthar chibai lawk le!

Tikhan Vaiva nen khan lo inkawm ula, keini chu nula te nen ar kan han kang mai mai ange ( hehe )

Belh hram : List -ah khian , DAMLAI LUSUN kha telhve ngei chu a ngai an g ( haha )

illusionaire said...

Boss thin chu oooo... nakinah ka saas ka rawn awhfik ang che :P

Kumthar chibai leh, hotupa.

ruolngulworld said...

belated congratulations on the tehelka feature and here's to another great year. Happy New Year.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kima, Kumthar chibai... I just wanna say you rock.You will be wondering who is this anon right? well I'm your ardent fan who eagerly awaits your articles everyweek.. Rara Avis

chawnghilh said...

Well spun for a bygone December, Happy New fruitful Year again!

Pixie said...

HAPPY NEW YEAR KIMA! :)

May the New Year bring you lots of love, peace and happiness and success! :)

Irene said...

2009 a I hlawhtlin na zawng2 ah ka lawmpui a che.

Hun lo la kal leh zel turah pawh Pathianin malsawmna tam tak vur che rawh se.

Happy New Year 2010

Vikram said...

Happy New Year Kima ! Keep rocking like this man !

Eveline said...

Oh gee. I meant to respond to this earlier. Happy New Year! I've been a terrible commenter lately - it feels good to be back!

You appeared on Tehelka! And why not? I think you are the biggest nerd! Ever!
And I mean that in the best way!! You are, of course, articulate, witty, funny, blah blah blah, have an encyclopedic knowledge of issues and events, and you totally adore your fans as much as we adore you, so this all works out pretty well! In a word? You rock! OK, I know that's two words. Sue me. :)

Jesse TheCat ! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jesse TheCat ! said...

A wonderful read! Sounds like you had a grand ending to the year,and may it always continue to get better and more exciting for you,my friend :)

aduhi said...

Congrats on the Tehelka feature. Now that is quite an achievement, something definitely worth celebrating. And I'm so jealous.
And re the the family book, call it a coincidence or whatever but I was thinking of doing something similar, you know some kind of a who's who in the family tree.

Banno said...

Illusionaire,

I definitely had more fun reading your top 5 moments of December than all the lists in the papers on 2009.

Alejendro said...

The Tittle \m/ ... ka sue dawn che.. :-P

P.S. Happy New Year if it's not too late...

dr_feelgood said...

Lokks like you really had a sweet December. As for me and my family, we had hoped to have my two kids home for Christmas, but only one was able to make it, so it was a small let down. Anyway, we had the typical Christmas and New Year with no mishaps, so, we should thank God.Hope to see more of your interesting and sometimes thought provoking blogs in 2010. Cheers.

Varte said...

Happy New Year Hotupa.. In chhungkua chu khawte run tham zet chu in nih khi.. Khitiang zat in kalkhawm thei khi in vannei hle mai.

Mariuca said...

Happy 2010 Sandman...may this New Year bring you the best in life, love and health, hugs! :)

Blind Dayze said...

i can relate to the bringing "home" part.. and besides the Tehelka feature it must be cool to be working in THE top most agency...
...im definitely gonna try to send fan~mail to some of the bands that i admire..

Zaia said...

Kumthar chibai le. I hlawhtlinnaah ka lawmpui bawk a che.

illusionaire said...

@ ruolngulworld: Thank you Pu Chaoticserenity :) Belated wishes from me too.


@ Rara Avis: Kumthar Chibai to you too. Thank you so much for visiting regularly and commenting. Hope I don't disappoint you.


@ chawnghilh: Have a fruitful year to you too, hotupa.


@ Pixie: Happy new year, dear Pix. May you also have lots of love, peace, happiness and success (and maybe little feet running around the house soon) :-)


@ Irene: Nang pawh Happy New year Ka Pi :-)


@ Vikram: Thanx bro. Happy New Year to you too. And keep clicking :)

illusionaire said...

@ Eveline: Happy New Year dear Eve. I know, us nerds have ways of finding our ways in magazines :D And of course you rock more! :)


@ Jesse: Hugzzz dear Jess. Haven't seen you around here in a long time. Hope you had a great New Year and wishing you all the best for the future. Warmest greetings from India.


@ Aduhi: Thank you dear Adz. And yes it was worth celebrating (for a couple of days). About the family book, I think it is something all of us shoudld do, especially those of us who reisde outside Mizoram. We should never forget our family.


@ Banno: awwww... :) Thanks Banno. Happy belated New Year.


@ Alej: lolzzzz, sue me :P Happy New year to you too, oh great momo chef :)

illusionaire said...

@ dr_feelgood: Yes, it was indeed a very sweet december. Sorry to hear that one kid couldn't make it. But hey, look at the bright side - At least that meant lesser stress :-) Here is me wishing you and your family all the very best for the future.


@ Varte: Happy New Year Hotunu. Nia kan lo tam ve khawp mai. Khing khi ka pa lam chauh an la ni zui. Ka nu te lam leh phei phei chu... :D


@ Mariuca: Dear Marz, hugzzzz. May this New Year bring you the best in life too (although you already have B). Read about your hospital experience briefly from my mobile but couldn't leave any comment. Am sure glad B is fine now. Lots of love and hugz from me to you two.


@ Blind Dayze: Thanx. And yes, its pretty wonderful working here, except it is extremely hectic. We are so used to this life now.


@ Zaia: Kumthar chibai, hotupa. And thank you for the warm wishes. Nang pawh le :)

Pixie said...

Happy New Year! :)
Linked you up to my post today!
Hope you don't mind!
The songs are blocked at work.. will check 'em out at home again!

So, did you do anything stupid for New Year?!! ;)
Like make a resolution maybe? no?
ok.. I'm done commenting for now!

Tetea said...

Tehelka? Don't look so surprised. You deserve it. And I know that you know that you do.

Anyways, congrats and a belated Happy New Year!

Keichala said...

A very happy belated New Year!

illusionaire said...

@ Pixie: Ah yes, I read your post. We've come a long way, haven't we? Here's to the continuation of this great blogship! :)

@ Tetea: Thanx! :) Though I know I do not deserve such compliments. Happy New Year to you too.

@ Keichala: Same to you! :)

Geneza Pharmaceuticals said...

I am glad that everything bad is over for you)

Gideon said...

Thanks for this article, really useful piece of writing.
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Priscilla said...

i ziak tha hle mai. very inspiring and a simple reminder of the beauty in little pleasures in life.

btw, im Mimi's (remsiami) cousin from Pi Rami's side. she has mentioned quite bit about you and real proud of you :)