Vantage point

Tuesday, January 28, 2003


Satyen and Shantanu were in my class since class 4, and my memory is not really strong enough to recall what my first impressions of them were. In fact do we even consciously record first impressions at the age of 10?

Rushi I have met but we have hardly ever interacted. I mean if I see him, I will know he is Rushi Desai, but he was always a friend's friend. So he does not qualify for the first impression thing either.

Sumeet is someone I have known since mini KG, i.e when I was 4 years old. We were in the same class in mini KG before I left Pune. Then when I came back to Pune in class 4 and joined Abhinav Vidyalay, he was in the afternoon shift and I was in the morning shift and we never really met much. I just knew that there is a dude called Sumeet Kulkarni who is one of the toppers in his division.
The first time I really interacted with him a great deal was during a coaching class in class 10. A big group of my friends, including me, Satyen, Aniruddha etc used to sit in a big group at the back of the class and generally create a lot of noice, crack jokes and make life difficult for the teacher. Sumeet used to be the sole exception and would seriously take down the notes and not participate in our tomfoolery at all. So the first impression I had of him was of this overly studious bookworm who does not know how to have fun. I thought he was a guy obsessed with studies, studies and only studies and was grumpy enough to make Scrooge look like Santa.

He seemed focussed on doing well in studies and nothing else. In fact I remember saying to someone that I bet he has never smiled except when being photographed.

How wrong this first impression was. It is an excellent example of how horribly wrong you judge a person when you look at them with a limited perspective, and jump to conlusions. Later when I was to know Sumeet better over the 4 years that we were classmates in COEP, I found out that I was wrong in almost every department in judging him. He has one of the best senses of humour I know and he is quite a punster(as can be gauged from his blog). In fact there were times later when people used to beg him to shut his trap, since his jokes were getting too much ;-). He is a very helpful chap who can be counted upon to rush to your assistance even at midnight. His interests are very diverse and he is a great conversationalist. The one thing where I did gauge him partially right was his commitment to his academics. He is not a bookworm, but is very focussed on his acads, and makes full use of his sharp intelligence with his efficient efforts.

No wonder he works in Texas Instruments, which is THE most sought after company for engineers of our stream. He is a guy who is destined to make it big. And have a fun life while doing so.