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I succeeded in reaching office on time on the first day. As I had worked in the IT sector, the office didn’t charm me as much as it would have charmed a fresher. I met my boss, a man, older than me by a year or two, graduated from a B-School better than mine by three ranks or four. The man looked sleep deprived and this scared me because I had no plans to skip my slumber to get to the next level. He got looked really overjoyed to see me, as if I was a childhood crush of his, whom he never had the guts to talk to and was finally getting to speak to.

He made me sit, called in the peon to fetch 2 cups of coffee and started a motivational speech. The way in which he spoke made me wonder whether he had written this speech years ago and read it in front of the mirror every night since then. It had proverbs, idioms, short stories, quotations and what not. A part in me did get stimulated to work hard and lay down my life for the company but the slothful part in me that had the hold on my brain at most times didn’t give a damn and I stayed clueless.

After forty minutes of fueling my brain, he let me free. I headed straight to my cubicle. It was in a large hall and was bordered with 3 more cubicles. None of the other cubicles had their occupants when I reached mine. I read the names of their inhabitants who were going to be my neighbours. One of them was a gentleman from South India, ‘Ranganathan Krishnamoorthy’. I saw some sticky notes and a few photos on his white board. All photos had 4 to 5 similar looking boys with their arms on each other’s shoulders.

I thought of him to be one of those guys who shit their pants when they have to talk to girls and thus prefer to hang out with guys and have one sided crushes on girls and dream of miracles to happen and the girls falling in love with them. A sticky note read ‘RK’. That was probably the groovy name given to him to make him look cooler.

The other neighbor was an overweight Bong guy – ‘Bijoyendra Gongopadhyay’. He had pictures of his family on his white board. All the pictures had a grumpy looking fat woman who wore a big red bindi and a skinny man who seemed to have forgotten to smile the day he got married.

It looked like the mother and the son were eating all the Rasgullas and the man got nothing to eat. They were making different binary numbers in every picture depending upon where the father sat. 100, 010, or 001, if he was on the left, in the middle, or on the right, respectively. Since there was no other human in all the pictures, I guessed that Bijoyendra would have been the only child.

 

After seeing two uninteresting neighbors’ pictures, the only picture on the white board in the third cubicle caught my attention. It had two girls. One of them had braces and looked a lot like Ranganathan’s long lost sister. The only difference was that she had a mustache and Ranganathan didn’t.

But the other girl in the picture was one of those girls who could make a boring day in office worthwhile. She was dusky, wore frameless spectacles and had hair that were naturally brown. She was a head-turner. I had multiple voices in my head that prayed that the girl in that cubicle should not be Miss Ranganathan. I read the name-’Vidya Srivastav’. That didn’t clear anything. I decide to wait and see if I were lucky.

Ten minutes later, luck struck and I met Vidya and she didn’t have a mustache!

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