Tuesday, June 19, 2007

JRM- My Karmabhoomi.. The Best of My Umang Memories

We talk about the people, the processes, the meetings, the professors; but never about the place where it all happened. That ugly piece of architecture that stands next to our college building. It lacks even the basic principles of structure- those of symmetry and functionality. But somehow it has proved capable of stimulating us umangites’ minds to come up with some of the most path breaking- maybe even a few ridiculous- ideas that have catapulted umang to where it is now. Here are a few of my pet memories of my proverbial Janmabhoomi, Ranbhoomi, Matrubhoomi- JRM.

Pratik Shroff (VCP3-2004), along with Chintan Buddhadev (Security Head-2004) conceived one of the most wacko ideas to comprehend the mystery called JRM. They played hide-n-seek with the committee members to understand what might be the places where the audience may hide during the evacuation before the Pronite. The jury is still out on how successful was the exercise but it gets an A for the innovativeness of the idea.

Cricket on JRM was many things to many people. For some it was trying to stay in touch with one of the many things that umang tends to take you away from. For some it was simply about recharging the overused batteries. For the select ambitious lot, it was a ‘platform’ to show their HoDs how versatile they were. I have to my credit the honour of breaking the glass notice board outside room 3 during 2005. After being bludgeoned by sponsors and journos alike, there is nothing like letting off some steam on the approaching ball.

And this is exactly why I empathize with Parinaz. It is common knowledge that the real reason why she used to kick the football as hard as she did was because she used to imagine it to be her VCP- what with it being white, round and quiet- just like me. I don’t think JRM will forget her lightning-like strikes in a hurry.

There are many things you do as an umangite which seem downright stupid in hindsight. It always used to irk me and Harshal that so many departments used to sit on chairs in JRM rather than on the ground itself. Somehow our miscalculation of the magnitude of influence a VCP has made us believe that if we set an example, the rest may follow. In this endeavor, we used to make it a point to sit right in the center of JRM, discussing nothing much, only how smart we were to have thought of this!!!

The monsoon’s gloom always brought a new cheer to JRM. My nose remembers the smell of the soil and cement willingly taking the raindrops into its embrace. It was almost as if JRM had a tacit agreement with the monsoons to trouble us. Even as we would be trying to come up with one decent idea to impress our HoD, the rains would appear out of nowhere- sending us scurrying for cover. Many girls would deliberately take longer to escape- they knew the power their drenched hair could wield.

But all this happened only pre-umang. During Umang it never mattered even if the area near the stage was under ankle-deep water. Somehow the mixture of the atmosphere and water created some sticky substance which kept the audience glued to JRM – even as the rain came pelting down.

JRM dresses up like a bride during those 4-5 days of umang. During the rest of the year, many other suitors would come along to woo her but she would only respond ib a civil and friendly manner- never more.

The Greatest Memory- 20th august 2005
War of the DJs- 7:30 pm.
I was asked to come to the college terrace by Ankit and I rushed there assuming some sponsor banner might have come off. Dylan and Harshal were already there when I reached there. They beckoned me to peer over the skirting of the terrace to look at JRM. Below innumerable crazy people were dancing to the beats of an obscure DJ- that they were crammed in a place meant for a far lesser population didn’t seem to matter to them. There was a riot of colors. Some had chosen black for this was the closest they had ever come to a truly happening party. Some had gone for the daringly vibrant yellows, oranges and pinks for either they were wannabes or didn’t care what they were. Some took refuge in the safe and somber whites and creams. Most didn’t care whether they were jiving, grooving, waltzing, garba-ing, bhangra-ing or simply head-banging. It felt great to have influenced so many people’s decision on where they should spend their evening. There are a few moments in life when you feel closer to god. This was the one for me.

Kunj Sanghvi
Finance Head- UMANG’04
Finance Committee Member- UMANG’03
UMANG Fan - Lifelong

1 comment:

Pratz said...

Sigh...Kunj...this one post has brought back memories of the past two years to moi...Will really miss thos Umag days...especially 2005, the first day i stepped into Umag...trying to get along ..become a part of the magic around...of the work process going...an obedient committee member making notes with every sentence tht shikha spoke :p ... and ofcourse the JRM....the place where we had our VCP Meet...where Shikha treated us to a home made lunch party...where we practised a drama with Priyank and Pro ppl and called our cheerily "Hail Murarka".... where we spent hrs making the scoreboard... where I roamed on the Umang days to meet Parth at the other end and to take in the audience experience....where we danced the night away on the Pro-nites and the Final day celebration...sigh there are just so many memories....
gr8 Post Sir...keep blogging...

- Pratik Bubna
Umang Committee Member (Computers)- 2005, 2006
Umang Fan - Lifelong!!!