Thursday, October 30, 2008


Yesterday was Bhaidoojh and something odd happened. I knew it was coming for some time but anyway.

I was in Bombay and had gone to the office of this Brijesh-banker to make a presentation (which is a way of saying don't forget us just because there's no closing anytime soon) and when everyone had left the room on some pretext or another, Brijesh shut the door. And started talking very casually of a recent amendment about composition of Board of directors. I suddenly knew where he was going and put a plate of biscuits between us which I kept rotating to show I didn't care much about the outcome of the conversation.

Anyway, so from Brijesh's talk went to the amended understanding of "related to promoters" in the listing agreement [more entities deemed to be related]; from there a brief deviation to related parties transactions and AS-18; and back to what I scented was the story- "relatives".
I was swirling the biscuit plate at a turbine rate and it almost generated electricity. No yaar-yaar, no back-pat, no tease like the old times.

I knew it was all over when I saw a silk thread hanging limp from the laptop bag of Brijesh. "Mil gaya" Brijesh said slipping out the rakhi.

Not that he tied it but he sorted of handed it over to me in a check-this-out way, like it was a gizmo or something. "Technically this is a Rakhi thing but whatever dude" he said good-naturedly in a way Shah Rukh may say with the nervous laugh at the end.
So I slipped it in my pocket and was like- "Now we will watch out for each other, Bridge. This is a pact, man. Remember that when you circulate the next last-minute deadline without consulting me!"

I hoped this made things easier and less odd and even grabbed a biscuit casually (which I didn't eat entirely due to the diet regime, just pretended to drop it soon with an oh-f).

And we walked out of the room quickly reading old messages on our phones.

Monday, October 27, 2008

A Difficult Situation

Just 1 minute before mailing a draft , my control-find stopped. I did not have an option to delay the draft by even a minute because a banker had called me stating that the client really needed to see a few emails etc so I should mail "whatever there is done so far like in 20 min max ASAP". Plus intern-boy I discovered had not accepted ANY of my review comments. That is what happens when you smile at an intern so much and discuss intimate details such as razors for legs, your first X-Box and how you cried when you lost the yellow plastic bat 20 years ago and could not play bat-ball with the servant's son for a week.

So employee reservation and all was showing in the draft and this looks as bad as the strap of a vest and brahmin thread showing over an expensive shirt in a drafting session.

So I sucked a deep breath. Said OK-fine to the banker. I even added a smiley since this banker Brijesh, he had not teased me for a long time with that Delhi "yaar"-"hero" style.

And so the draft was mailed to all with the armour of a long cover letter using the sly phrase "working draft"*. I even added- and this is a tip I picked up from an ILC- a line to the effect that if parties wished they were free to comment on the draft though it was in an initial stage and we would circulate a draft by thursday for comments.

Noone with much self-respect could then comment on the draft with these masterstrokes in the cover letter.

This is how I met a deadline where I had 20 minutes notice and the Control Find was not working.

Frankly, I can't believe you are actually reading this.

I'm hedging my bets about how I will turn out- a housewife or a lawyer (yeah guys I know I'm a dude and all so the housewife bit is just metaphor. It will also help me if I decide to apply for the Cheveing, mixed up identities and all). This is my other forum to be read, entertain and in a subversive way, make a few subtle points while indulging in what keeps me going: writing. I think my writing is original and to prove this, I invite your attention to my Issue Procedure sections.

Bye. Go bitch about someone.

*Noone can seriously comment on a working draft unless one is admittedly vain and just likes the strokes of one's pen being admired by scattered bankers in Nariman Point, lawyers and a company secretary in Bilaspur.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Room Mate

Some guy from my college days is staying with me for a few days. Then he will move into an Alaknanda house, one of those girly-sounding Gangotri-Yamuna yellow buildings.
I would not mind except that he is over-smart. Like when I am watching Big Boss and and it ends and I am too-chilled in that bean bag to, like, change the channel, he's like: Dude, admit it. You only watch Big Boss so you are not caught actively tuning on to Balika Vadhu.

Balika Vadhu is this really odd TV serial right after Big Boss. There is a fierce mother-in-law in it, who looks like a cheetah wearing a Rajasthani ghaghra and standing on two hind feet.

Anyway so I was like, "dude, i'm just being hospitable. i'm doing this for ya so you don't have to go through the awkwardness of ASKING me to tune in to B.V." Thank God for acronyms.

"Wha--?" He made a puzzled face like he was Chandler in Friends. "You know what, you need to get a life. B.V? Dude, you're scaring me!"

I walked into my room and banged the door. Then silence. But it felt too much like an angry wife. So I came out and banged the door again as if to show that was my deal with doors, aggressive and all.

By then, I had missed a few lines in B.V. but he briefed me and we watched it together with a pink newspaper on the laps which we looked into frequently and even discussed Lehman, Nomura etc (during the ad-breaks)

Monday, October 06, 2008

Last Week of September

And so as the clock drew close to September 30 and almost struck midnight, I felt like a male-Cinderella.... They were all expiring, the dance had to end....

The glass Nike-shoe turned into a distant dot and the silent song of the old souls: "the March numbers are expiring! the 6 month rule! Can't file DRHP! Cat-soup!"

"ALLPARTY CON CALL-please confirm asap!" A banker threw the hook and we bit like suicidal fish.

Speaking on the con call, I was no more Cindarella. I was an Ashok Kumar kind of serious surgeon. The kind who in 80s movies used to take off his gloves and say outside the green curtains of an operation theatre: "hum aapke [] ko nahin bacha sake". And blink quickly to indicate invisible male-tears.

I spoke, shifting from Ashok Kumar the surgeon to Iftekhar the policeman (esp when talking to auditors) to Hangal the village-daughter's father asking for izzat (esp when talking to promoter-uncle) to Manorama the evil mother-in-law (esp when talking to the Company Secretary thanks to pending info and ALL THE SMILEYS HE SENDS ME AND HE IS 46 YEARS)....

[with Red Bull that cool drink for guys]
At the end when it became clear SOMEONE fromt the work group has to break the news since the CFO was still in a "naheee!!" denial mode.

I said:
"Cl 49 is yet to be stricly complied with... [trail many requisition lists as a polite defence]... and in light of this material deviation...
we tried to...
not advisable...
not possible...

Mentally preparing them with each para, pre-conversed and rehearsed, and said in the apologetic spirit of Death [which is inevitable but never welcome, like September 30 Truths in a Bad Market]

Oh, and guess what. Just before this Asap-con call, a baby analyst-banker smsed "what is dis call about?? it's 10 pm man!"

I wrote "basically the drhp can't be filed tomo; so we are telling ur clients this news. To save you the messy conversation."

"xcellent dude. will get the co-head on dis call coz sounds critical. and also can u send m3 back-ups of dd-dox smtime esp rej3t3d FIPB app and all dat?"


then he wrote "xoxo". But i think that was a mistake he must have meant to send it to smone else what the hell.

Now read this poetry and feel deep... Frankly, it's like a 2007 real estate company cover letter- long and kind of boring. So get a shot of coffee before. The poem is intended to redeem my liberal use of Bollywood references in the post.
In any case I am carrying a basketball to office on Saturday just to make sure I don't slip too much in the coolness-ranking.

Poetry is a substiute
For idle remembrances
Strung like plastic toys
On cheap wires
A child cries
For a water-gun
And years later
The word
“Country fair”
Reminds him of
Unmet wants
Taunts, a high-pitched
And he blames
Himself for
The weekend break-up
For the homosexuality
For stealing office stationery
For the costly session
To cure depression
The word “country fair”
He remembers more
Yellow and red
And between the branches
A leaf dances
He snaps his finger, one by one
Part for Q.E.D. ("this is it... this was it...")
Part for that old women's disease, arthritis.


Thursday, October 02, 2008

A Product

You know it's a bad economy when the chance of a Rs. 30 crore buy-out is headlines news in Business Standard.

Separately, stepping out into a dalal avtaar- I have thought of a complexish product. To make it even more complex/free from scrutiny, we can decorate it with a few trusts into it, will make it seem tax-friendly.

This is a promoter-financing boutique vehicle. Only for rights issues to promoters and preferential issues to promoters.

GreenRock LLP will finance promoter funding for acquire their shares in rights/pref issues. The slogan will be "Pamper your Company in Bad Times: Dilution-Free"

In return GreenRock LLP will get a many pieces of paper. On this, a vase mountain of deriavtives will be made and traded and I will only know it's rocked the market when it comes right back to me in an evolved form and I buy it and sell it again. Passing on the parcel till the music stops like it did in the old country song Mortgage Montana.

But how will GreenRock LLP get funds to fund promoter acquisitions? Debt is too expensive; I do not want to work only to service the debt like a bandhua mazdoor. Maybe I will need to get a HNI partner. I'm thinking Shah Rukh... He will have that reassuring, you-are-safe-with-me main hoon nah effect on clients. And the dimples are not bad either. Let's see.