AJ entered office, talking on his blackberry, waved good morning to everyone and took his seat. While traveling from home to office, he has already solved 7 problems faced by Indian offshore team. He is Akhilesh Jaggnath Madatiparambil, fondly known as AJ the solution.

Last week, there was some compatibility issue while running the latest version of web application and we were harassing our onshore coordinators as usual. The browser settings refused to let it work. Prasad, our charming IT coordinator was bugged and told us to recreate the problematic conditions faced by USA team to get into the muddle and find out the exact problem. AJ was passing by conference area, stopped for a moment, hopped on the call and said “Guys!! Recreate the Solution, never the problem” That was AJ as usual, you throw a challenge on him and he will give you so many solutions that you will pity on your stupidity. AJ was always every where, talking on his blackberry every time; he was always solving problems or winning over someone with his blackberry. He bribed the priest for allowing him to talk on his blackberry, while taking rounds of heavenly fire during his marriage.

Company was proud of AJ and employees loved their savior. Although everyone always talked about his bravado, he always had a fear of losing his lucky charm i.e. his blackberry. This blackberry was testimony to his rise from rags to riches; he was nobody, but the day he bought this blackberry, lady luck favored him and he got this creamy position. He never looked back, gave his best to his job and ultimately it became a habit to touch the soil and make it gold. One day, Jennifer got a wrong number by calling AJ on his blackberry and he got a right wife for life. Whenever he got into a problem, his blackberry was not with him. Once he forgot his blackberry at office and he got fined, twice for lane jumping. Conditions, situations both forced him to believe in the lucky charm. From thereon, he used to keep his blackberry with him, in showers, on treadmill, virtually everywhere.

AJ was doing great, so was the company and he never cared a dim about anything else. However on that particular day, there were some divine powers working against him; he was driving back home and traffic sergeant instructed him to stop in last lane. He asked AJ for his name, as soon as he uttered Akhilesh Jaggnath Madatiparambil, Marabou started writing something on some paper. And to his horror, AJ had to part with his blackberry, his 4 wheel drive and his passport. Traffic sergeant was Marabou Lewinsky, a kind hearted man to everyone but always held a grudge against people, who had bill in their name. He was always a butt of jokes for sharing his surname with Monika Lewinsky (Bill Clinton fame) and every time somebody told him a Monika joke, he took a pledge to fine 10 more people sharing Bill Clinton’s first or last name. AJ tried reasoning with him but to no avail, he was told to collect them after 15 days from the court.

Without his blackberry, he was feeling devastated. As soon as he reached home, his always sweet wife Jennifer yelled at him as some ‘Kristin’ had called up home and left some kisses on the voice recorder. He made her at peace but he was feeling doomed. He knew, with his lucky charm being away, problems will attack him from all the corners.

And he was so true, he reached office and nothing was working as it used to be. He got an email about dropping sales, that’s a warning. He tried writing a mail, his computer hanged; he tried calling some new clients, nobody took his calls. He was getting mad, he was desperate to hear some nice word about him; he tried talking to Indian counterparts, they always showered praises on him but today they only complained. AJ’s head was paining like hell, so he decided to go for a cup of coffee, but as the luck had it, coffee vending machine showed no coffee. After spending a near disastrous day at work, he reached home; Bruno the dog was having fever and roof was leaking. After a hard fought half spent night, AJ the winner was feeling like a looser and retired to bed. AJ woke up by some hussy mushy sounds. He came downstairs and saw his sweet son Jr. trying his best to reach the cookie jar kept at 6 ft height. AJ got lost in his innocence; he felt at ease with himself and sat right there watching antics of Jr.

Junior was just 6 years old but he seemed to be blessed with more patience than his father. He tried umpteen times and sat there watching the cookie jar. He felt like giving him the jar but thought to see what all he can do. Jr. had a watch, which was with him day and night and he kept it close to heart every time. AJ told to himself, my son is not succeeding because he also does not have his lucky charm, his watch. He wanted to see if Jr. looses hope just like his father without his lucky charm or get to the Jar. Junior disappeared somewhere and he thought, Jr. will be back with his watch and everything will fall in place for him. But, Alas! Junior was back with his toy ladder and AJ’s hockey stick, and in few moments, the Jar was all his. AJ hugged him tight, junior was scared but he saw his always brave dad crying.

Junior relished the cookies and AJ enjoyed the new found hope; at 2’O clock duo were having a time of life, eating cookies together.

AJ was out of his bed at sharp 6, it all went well in the gym; this was first time, he clocked 5 km in 20 minutes flat. AJ kissed Jr. Goodbye to school and dropped Jennifer to office. Within a week’s time, he could restore and improve the sales figures of the company. He signed some new contracts for the company and was sure of good times ahead. Although nobody showered him with praises, he was sure it will come eventually.

The days at office were never so good; AJ never felt so confident about his capabilities. Six months passed by and he was virtually everywhere, his strategies were talk of the town; he bailed out many companies from near bankruptcy.

His blackberry was back in his bag but he rarely used it. He treated it as a bad omen, suddenly it rang. A sweet voice was heard asking for him, somebody from ‘Blackberry the company’ wanted to speak to him; he heard Blackberry’s CFO Malcolm Speed voice on other side; they needed his help for bailing them out from a near bankruptcy. They wanted to meet him anytime convenient to him, even at 12 midnight. AJ’s Rolls Royce took a sharp turn; he met them, discussed strategies and assured them of help. He carried all the necessary papers with him for finalizing the strategies.

Next, he got a call from his son; Junior wanted him to bail out his paper boat from the pool. He reached home, bailed out the paper boat; AJ was ready to bail out the berry boat.

originally written at 21. September 2008 08:19