STROKING THE BIRD'S TAIL









It’s the break-time in our Tai Chi class, this morning. “Do you keep yourself in touch with politics?” I asked Kannan.

“Just something here and there,” Kannan said, “I don’t take political parties’ rhetoric – their promises and accusations - too seriously.” He told me an old management story…

A Turkey always envied the Eagle who sat majestically on the top of the tree. One day, he expressed his feelings before his friend, the Bull. “My friend, I wish to sit like the Eagle at the top of this tree, but, I don’t have the required energy.”
“Is that your problem?” said the Bull, “Believe me, my droppings are very nutritious… Why can’t you try?”
Turkey believed in his friend’s words and took a few bites of the dung. “Wow! It’s working!” The Turkey could manage to reach the first branch, that very moment!
The next day, some more bites of his friend’s dung, and the Turkey was on the send branch!
On the third day, on the third branch!
Only one more branch and the Turkey would be on the top of the world! Yes, the next day, with the help of a little bit of his friend’s nutrition, the Turkey was there, proudly seated - like the glorious Eagle who he had envied – on the top of the tree!
Just then, a farmer sighted the Turkey… and shot him down!

Kannan told me, “Gerry, this way, we fall prey to the false promises of our political parties… because, we have no faith in ourselves.” He added, “The bullshit can take a Turkey to the top of the tree… But, it can’t keep him there!”

The Eagle and the politician reminded Kannan about one more Management story…

A Rabbit, too, envied the Eagle, who sat on the top of the tree and did nothing most of the times… One day, he asked the Eagle, “Can I, too, sit here and do nothing like you?”
“Oh yes, you surely can,” the Eagle replied.
The Rabbit was delighted to hear the good news. Thus, he sat under the tree all day long doing nothing. As the day was coming to an end, a hungry Fox saw the Rabbit and quickly had his early dinner!”

The moral of the story: “Gerry, none of us can afford to sit doing nothing even if the political parties assure us we can. We need to work our way up for that!”

For a change, later in the class today, when our Tai Chi sir, Rakesh Menon, was leading us through some very interesting – some  ‘fast and furious’ -  exercises, Kannan and I decided to sit on the sides and continue with our Management stories. Pointing to his good-old friend (a retired school Principal) and some very senior fellow-students, Kannan told me in his own jolly-good-fellow style…“Look at my friend Kalyani and our senior friends… Do you think they can do these exercises? But, they are enjoying them… That’s important. To me, it is like being at a medical store… All medicines there are good… But, all medicines there are not good for me!”

“Don’t blog on this,” Kannan cautioned me, “My friend will kill me!”

Friendship reminded Kannan about one more management story… It was the last one for the day…
It was extremely cold outside and a little bird was lying on the ground almost frozen. A passing Bull’s dung fell on the bird and suddenly she felt very warm inside the dung. The Bird was so happy that she began to sing… A Cat heard this and came near the spot from where the music was coming. When she saw the Bird inside the dung, the Cat pulled the Bird out of the mess, but promptly gobbled her!”

Kannan had this to say as the moral… “Gerry, traditionally, there are three lessons from this story:
1) Not everyone who drops shit on you is your enemy.
2) Not everyone who gets you out of shit is your friend.
3) And when you're in deep shit, keep your mouth shut!”


“Do you keep yourself in touch with politics?” It all had started with my question to Kannan.
“Just something here and there,” Kannan had said, “I don’t take political parties’ rhetoric – their promises and accusations - too seriously.”

So, I suggest, you don’t take this Post seriously, too… Just remember being at a medical store!!!

GERALD D’CUNHA

Pic.: Shoba N Krishnan

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