SingleTON: Goa

What is SingleTON?
Single TravellingOverNight 🙂

For now, that is what I could think for the ‘TON’ in the word Singleton. In future, if my grey cells get creative, I may change the full form of the acronym.

Well, this section is on my short trips in India. It may-may not be an overnight stay, but for sure it is on a short vacation.

Destination: Goa, India
Days: 4 days 3 nights
Travel via: JetAirways (then it was operative. Now I would opt for Indigo Airlines)

Venue: Lotus Beach Resort, Benaulim, South Goa
Cost: Stay is Affordable in October-November as it is off-season. Very Affordable if you happen to be an Orchid Hotel member (I was, so got discounts on almost everything plus had utilized the member discount coupons for stay.)
Breakfast: Inclusive with the stay. Basic but good. (South Indian Menu, Eggs, Milk Shakes, Fruit Juice, Corn Flakes, Bread, Butter, Jelly, Tea, Coffee, Milk, etc.)
Food (Lunch/Dinner): Delicious

Cost of a car tour for North Goa: 10 am to 6 pm around Rs. 3000 (Please negotiate! I think I could have done better here.) Car/Cab cost from Goa Airport to Lotus Beach Resort would be some where around Rs. 1000 to Rs. 1200. Pre-Booked Cab/Taxi is expensive than private car. But safety is priority. So choose wisely.

Places Visited:
1. Big Foot Museum (It has got a gift shop inside which is worth visiting for souvenir shopping. Entry Tickets between Rs. 50 and Rs. 100 for Indian Citizens. I don’t remember the exact amount.)
2. Casa Araujo Alvares
3. Basilica of Bom Jesus
4. Fort Aguada
5. Benaulim Beach (A candle light dinner at Roger’s on the beach is a great experience and they serve very good sea food. I do not drink alcohol, so can’t comment on that. But Mocktail was good. That I remember. Food for two may cost Rs. 1000-2000 depending on what you order.)

What did I buy?
Good question. Important question when it is me, who likes, correction here, loves to shop. Zantye’s Cashew Nut packets, Bebinca,  Jute Bag, Maxi Dress, Floral Chappals, Anklets (from sellers at Benaulim Beach; Remember to Bargain) and Mario’s Picture Frame (There is an outlet inside the Goa Airport in case you miss the Mario shops in the city). Goa Airport has some interesting outlets of Brands — books, jewellery, souvenirs, and more.

And now, it’s time for some Goa Glimpses…

Big Foot Museum

Casa Araujo Alvares

Basilica of Bom Jesus 

Fort Aguada

Lotus Beach Resort

Random Clicks

Until my next SingleTON, take care and keep reading!

….Ashu Bolar

 

Happy Diwali!

AshuBlogs_Panoramaa_HappyDiwali2019

Side Effects or Adverse Events or ???

Okay, today I will discuss a bit on medicine – its action and reaction.

What happens when you are prescribed a medicine—a pharmaceutical drug?

MedicineDefinition_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa.jpg

DrugDefinition_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa.jpg

Source: Google Search

First thing these days, I have noticed is that a patient usually searches on the Internet, the effect and side effects of the prescribed medicine. Now, it is the responsibility of the physician to explain them both. But sometimes patient may not remember all what doctor advised/explained or may be not very well understood due to complicated medical jargon. However, it is the responsibility of a doctor to explain and a patient to ask until the patient and/or the caretaker is crystal clear on the treatment plan, be it a prescribed medicine, advice for lab tests, diagnostic report or the need for any invasive procedure as simple as administering an injection. But does that happen, always? Busy Practice, Fear of Embarrassment, Confidence on Online Data, etc. etc. etc. are various hindrances. A very risky behavior.

Now, let’s understand some definitions.

What is a Side Effect?

SideEffects_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa

Source: Google Search

What is an Adverse Drug Reaction (ADR)?*

An Adverse Drug Reaction (ADR) as “an appreciably harmful or unpleasant reaction, resulting from an intervention related to the use of a medicinal product, which predicts hazard from future administration and warrants prevention or specific treatment, or alteration of the dosage regimen, or withdrawal of the product.” Such reactions are currently reported by use of WHO’s Adverse Reaction Terminology…Management includes withdrawal of the drug if possible and specific treatment of its effects. Suspected adverse drug reactions should be reported. Surveillance methods can detect reactions and prove associations.

*Source: Edwards IR, Aronson JK. Adverse drug reactions: definitions, diagnosis, and management. Lancet. 2000 Oct 7;356(9237):1255-9. PMID: 11072960 DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(00)02799-9. Available at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11072960 as assessed on 20th September 2019.

More information on ADR can be read on https://www.msdmanuals.com/en-in/home/drugs/adverse-drug-reactions/severity-of-adverse-drug-reactions

What is an Adverse Event (AE)?**

An Adverse Event (AE) is any undesirable experience associated with the use of a medical product in a patient. The event is serious and should be reported to FDA when the patient outcome is:

  • Death
  • Life-threatening
  • Hospitalization (initial or prolonged)
  • Disability or Permanent Damage
  • Congenital Anomaly/Birth Defect
  • Required Intervention to Prevent Permanent Impairment or Damage (Devices)
  • Other Serious Medical Events like patient requiring medical or surgical intervention to prevent one of the other outcomes or the development of drug dependence or drug abuse would also be examples of important medical events.

**Source: https://www.fda.gov/safety/reporting-serious-problems-fda/what-serious-adverse-event

And one such untoward reaction and undesirable experience – Somnambulism – has been illustrated in the movie ‘Side Effects’ of a prescription medicine for depression. Somnambulism is generally referred to as Sleep Walking. But a murder while sleep walking? Well, then it is a severest form of an adverse event. Means this or similar type of suicidal or homicidal instinct would have probably shown up during the clinical trial phase, and if so, the drug would not have been approved.

Such an event/incident for sure does not appear to be a Side Effect. And in case of an approved drug, if such signs and symptoms appear during the Post Marketing Surveillance (PMS), then further investigation is required to ensure if it is true, how true and how severe.

Now, connecting Medicine with Management or Economics, how can such information affect a Pharmaceutical Company? Its reputation? Its Stock Value?

Any negative review for one drug from a company means a bad news to the stock value of the entire company, not just one division of the company. And can this be planned? Hmmm, shouldn’t happen but there is something called as Securities Fraud/Stock Fraud/Investment Fraud, and yes, this can create a havoc, especially, when it comes from a distressed patient supported by a well known Physician—in this scenario to pacify the anxious traders/investors/shareholders is nearly impossible. And thus, the share price crashes. Something very beautifully depicted in the movie ‘Side Effects’, a psychological thriller.

Good actors, great acting, excellent plot and direction. I like Jude Law, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Rooney Mara. No reason not to watch. And it is on Netflix.

SideEffectsTrailer_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa

Movie Trailer Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jQq6BiT-eI

The movie poster reads: “One pill can change your life.”
Can it?
May be it can.
May be it can change more than just one life in known-unknown ways.

OTC (Over-The-Counter) or prescribed, every medicine is a drug and every drug is to be taken only after its effects and side effects are well understood for the betterment of oneself and for the benefit of the society at large.

More on Securities Fraud can be read on Investopedia, one of my go-to websites for quick reference and easy understanding of economics and finance related terminologies.

Yes, I did watch a few more movies that involved some twisted minds and mind games. Best ones on my list are Zodiac, Seven, True Story and The Frozen Ground. For those who like thrillers and murder mysteries, these are some good ones to watch.

Happy reading and Netflixing!

…Ashu Bolar

 

Hypothesis or Null Hypothesis?

Today, the topic revolves around Statistics.

Hmmm, interesting but not so easy to understand for everybody.

Twice in my Academic Journey, I have taken Statistics class. Once during Clinical Research, next in Management. However, what I have realized is if one does not apply it in his/her career on regular basis, then he/she tends to forget. Well, at least I do. So I have to keep going back to my Statistics notes as and when I am working on a project that involves some major analysis (like Market Research) or statistical interpretation (like a clinical study report).

There are three major terms one needs to know if reading a research report that involves Statistical Hypothesis Testing:

  1. Hypothesis
  2. Null Hypothesis
  3. Probability Value (p-value)

There are many more terms, but these are basics even to understand a simplified version of any research analysis.

Now, let’s have a look on what each means. For definitions, I have used my regular approach, Googling (Google-Search).

Hypothesis…

Hypothesis_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa

Null Hypothesis…

Null Hypothesis.jpg

P-Value…

The p-value is interpreted as below:
p-value ≤ 0.05:  It is a small value that indicates strong evidence against the null hypothesis — meaning you reject the null hypothesis. Thus, the hypothesis is a fact.
p-value > 0.05: It is a large value that indicates weak evidence against the null hypothesis — meaning you now cannot reject the null hypothesis. Thus, null hypothesis is a fact.

What happens when the p-value is 0.05?
In that case, p-value can be either-or, and to get the fact right, may involve further study.

For instance…

Hypothesis: Ashu is beautiful.
Null Hypothesis: Ashu is not beautiful.

Now, if p-value is ≤ 0.05 — meaning Ashu is beautiful.
But, if p-vlaue is > 0.05 — meaning Ashu is not beautiful.
And if p-value is 0.05 — meaning Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.

Still confused?

Well, in that case you must watch The Double – 2011 Hollywood Film starring Richard Gere and others. But I think mentioning Richard Gere is enough for anyone to watch the movie. It is on Netflix. Yes, I am Netflixing a lot these days, after Amazon Priming, which I will be streaming again very soon.

In the movie, the Null Hypothesis Concept is very beautifully and plainly explained. You will not forget it if you have watched the movie.

It is a very interesting script. Good direction…why only good, not excellent because the first suspense when revealed creates an impact on the audience, however, the second one is lost and comes out just as an exchange of words between two characters. (I had not watched the trailer, just read a line description, hence the suspense element for me.)

I happened to check the Wikipedia Page and the movie reviews, it seems, were not great. That kept me thinking, why so? My answer is, it is not to do with the script or direction. But I guess it is the casting. I would not be ok to watch my favourite actor/s portraying a role of a double agent assisting another nation, while my nation and/or citizens suffer. I just placed a Bollywood Lead in the story and tried analyzing the scenario. And if I was the producer, it would not work with my audience for sure. Means the low reviews had to do with the sentiments, not with the acting or the storyline.

Nevertheless, it is one of the good movies, I have watch on Netfix.

You can watch the trailer on the link below. My suggestion is do not watch the trailer, but directly the movie.

TheDouble_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa1

TheDouble_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa2.jpg

Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKRKoZIjiFk

Some good reads for p-value are…
What a p-value Tells You about Statistical Data by Deborah J Rumsey
and
P-value Definition reviewed by Brian Beers

Other significant statistical terminology includes terms like Standard Deviation, Variance and Normal Distribution. Now, those explanations will have to wait till I get some interesting analogy or may be some other movie that simplifies their definitions.

Till then, happy reading!

– Ashu Bolar

Game Theory

The first time I heard the term ‘Game Theory’ was in Microeconomics Class. An interesting concept.

Now, that is the definition I got on typing Game Theory in the Google Search Bar.

Game Theory_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa

In case the image is not visible then the definition is…

‘The branch of mathematics concerned with the analysis of strategies for dealing with competitive situations where the outcome of a participant’s choice of action depends critically on the actions of other participants. Game theory has been applied to contexts in war, business, and biology.’

Hmmm, the words that appear important to me here are:

  • Analysis
  • Strategy
  • Competitive Situations
  • Outcome
  • Choice of action

Speed of action is also significant, which is missing in the definition.

When this subject is discussed in the class, it starts with the Prisoner’s Dilemma. A crime has happened. The (suspected) criminals (two people) are arrested but on interrogation they deny their involvement. Now, the investigating officer has got a job to do. Confession has to be made. Justice has to be served. But how?

Sometimes, it is easy because either the criminal is not smart enough or there is a strong witness or evidence. In this case, the prisoners have no choice but to cooperate. No cooperation means there both the prisoners get punishment. Cooperation from one prisoner means it is a bad news for the other. Cooperation from both means both prisoners get punished but the law may be a little less harsh on them.

If you want to know more on Game Theory, you can visit the article on Game Theory on Investopedia or Game Theory in Economics at MBA Crystal Ball.

There are many other websites and books on this theory. The above mentioned links are for easy understanding for those who aren’t familiar but would like to know its application in Economics or Business Management.

But what can an investigator do in a crime scene where there has been a crime, someone is dead, the body and related stuff are carefully discarded, criminals think they have tied all loose and have the capability of doing so, have strong alibi with no strong evidence to link and no witness to speak? Criminals are free as birds, but there is someone grieving over the loss of a life yet is helpless with the investigation files closed and buried among many other cases.

If you want to understand this Game and the application of Game Theory in such a scenario, then you must watch The Invisible Guest, a Spanish crime thriller film.

Game Theory_InvisibleGuest_AshuBlogs_Panoramaa.jpg

It is on Netflix with English subtitles. Badla is a Bollywood remake. I haven’t watched the Hindi Film so I cannot comment. But the original movie has a very interesting script. So I think.

If you happen to watch, do share your views as comments.
And here is the link to the trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=epCg2RbyF80

…Ashu Bolar

 

 

Crazy, yep crazy it is!

“I know that you work very hard for that wife and child right there. I know you are real good at your job and that you take care of this company and you do things that they’ll never know about, that they’ll never appreciate. So, you’re very proud, right? But you’re scared. You’re scared because you’re dispensable. You’re scared because you know that, more than likely, one day, you’re gonna be replaced by somebody younger, somebody cheaper, may be even by an app.” – Sandy Patterson

An App? Ouch. You can’t even curse it or compare yourself with and feel superior as you would do if it was a human substitute. No space for blame game either. Crazy, indeed.

Those are the words spoken by the victim Sandy Patterson posing as Mr. Harold Cornish (his ex-boss) to the Account Processor while attempting a credit card fraud under guidance of a con artist Diana Budgie. Movie: Identity Thief, available at Netflix. Fun movie. I like both Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy.

Crazy_IdentityThief_Panorama

Identity Thief Movie Trailer links: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x8ZI0H3_tdU and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uO12W35DpsQ

Well, coming back to the quote. Yes, that makes a lot of sense. Today it is possible to be replaced by an app. It is human competing with intelligent automation and bots. Not a pleasant picture. Unfortunately this is the reality.

However, it has always been survival of the fittest. Natural selection. I doubt if bots fit in the Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. Not unless they reproduce, which is as of now, pretty much unlikely. This could be good news to our species depending on what we choose now and what we adapt to.

Something to think about, something that is discussed a lot in management classes these days and something to which we may need a creative solution to ensure a happy survival and selection. Scientific inventions always had pros and cons. May be by focusing on pros and taking care of the cons well in advance, we may not end up being as scared or insecure as we may be now. Interesting topic, subject to further discussion.

Till then, if you get a chance, do watch the movie, and it has one of my favourite songs…Crazy’s what they think about me, Fitz And The Tantrums – The Walker; Official Music Video Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGBLlFMn9Xc

And there you go with the lyrics (Lyrics Source: https://genius.com/Fitz-and-the-tantrums-the-walker-lyrics)

Ooh, crazy’s what they think about me,
Ain’t gonna stop ’cause they tell me so,
‘Cause 99 miles per hour baby,
Is how fast that I like to go.

Can’t keep up with my rhythm
Though they keep trying.
Too quick for the lines they throw.
I walk to the sound of my own drum,
We go, they go, we go, hey yeah yeah yeah…

Oh, here we go,
Feel it in my soul.
Really mean it, mean it, so go,
Gotta feel it, your heart, it takes control.
Really mean it, mean it.

I wake up to the city of angels,
To see my name headlining the coast.
They say I’m a walking dreamer, baby,
If I stop they would make the show.

Can’t keep up with my rhythm,
Though they keep trying.
Too quick for the lines they throw.
I walk to the sound of my own drum,
We go, they go, we go, hey yeah yeah yeah…

Oh, here we go,
Feel it in my soul.
Really mean it, mean it, so go,
Gotta feel it, your heart, it takes control.
Really mean it, mean it.

Oh, here we go,
Feel it in my soul.
Really mean it, mean it, so go,
Gotta feel it, your heart, it takes control.
Really mean it, mean it.

Everybody walk.
Everybody walk.
Everybody walk, walk, walk.

Oh, here we go,
Feel it in my soul.
Really mean it, mean it, so go,
Gotta feel it, your heart, it takes control.
Really mean it, mean it.

Oh, here we go,
Feel it in my soul.
Really mean it, mean it, so go,
Gotta feel it, your heart, it takes control.
Really mean it, mean it…

And I am humming the tune 🙂

Happy thinking. Happy reading!

…Ashu Bolar

Words, Meanings & Voices

Recently, I happened to watch a movie named Some Kind of Beautiful. Now, it has two more titles – How to Make Love Like an Englishman and Lessons in Love. Yes, slightly confusing. But with Pierce Brosnan in the movie, no matter what the title I got to watch it anyway.

It reminded me of my days as an English Literature student. ‘Romantics’ and ‘Romanticism’— important topics for a second year post graduation question paper. Poems and Poets from the Romantic era form a major part of the second year MA English syllabus. One can’t do without reading about and the works of Wordsworth, Byron, Coleridge, Blake, Bronte, Emerson, Hugo, Scott, Shelley and many more.

But what the movie made me realize is that no one taught me the way Prof. Gordon Haig and Prof. Richard Haig are teaching. Very interesting approach. I wish I had attended or probably in the future would get to attend such lectures. The way in which the significance of Romantics is explained is truly wonderful.

Some of my favourite lines from the movie are…

“…Romantic age which wasn’t about love. It was about going your own way, defying authority and following your heart…” – Prof. Gordon Haig

“Forget the critics. Let them have their own opinions. Let them publish their books and brag about them at tedious faculty parties and let university librarians file those books away…there is nothing theoretical about the Romantics—Where true Love burns Desire is Love’s pure flame; It is the reflex of our earthly frame, That takes its meaning from the nobler part, And but translates the language of the heart. (Desire by Samuel Taylor Coleridge).” – Prof. Richard Haig

“I can tell you what’s behind the words for them, but I can’t tell you what’s behind those words for you…because this class is about you learning to find your own meaning, your own voices. Go read the poems. But know that at this moment you are the Romantics, you are the relevant ones. Let Byron, Coleridge, Wordsworth inspire you to do your thing, to go your own way…Ignore anyone who says you can’t. Follow your hearts. Do good things, be bold and above all else…stick it to the man.” – Prof. Richard Haig

I totally relate to Prof. Richard Haig’s views. Finding your meaning, your own voice…hmmm…and that comes after learning from a lot of life experiences…some good, some not-so-good ones. What is important is that you find that voice, and then, cherish it, expand it and never let it go, and never stop learning, not just words, but the meaning behind them in your life.

Well, it made me think, what am I?

A Dreamer…hmmm…with open eyes and closed.

A Dynamo…hmmm… following heart has always been the way. Some label it as Drifter.

A Rebel…hmmm…if that’s what you call finding your own voice, then I guess, yes.

A Learner…hmmm…always was, always will be.

A Mentor…hmmm…in a way…boldness, advising, doing good things, guiding, comes naturally.

A Romantic…yes…a Millennial Romantic, for sure.

A very interesting movie. Some great acting. Some beautiful actors. Pierce Brosnan and Salma Hayek being my favourites. And there is the link to the trailer; movie is on Netflix.

Words Meanings Voices

Link to the Movie Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MyF9TXiOnLw

…Ashu Bolar

 

I did right, or did I?

Three years to complete the four decades of my life, I stand by myself, but surprising some, shocking many.

I did right, or did I?

Ten years post grieving a broken cord, I stand single, but strong.

I did right, or did I?

Twenty years of continuous evolving from the acquired knowledge, work, life, I stand alone, but confident.

I did right, or did I?

Twenty three years of life after a life altering loss, I stand upright, but attracting many frowns, some odd expressions.

I did right, or did I?

I stand to grow.

I stand to what I believe.

I stand to fly, fly high.

Brows will be raised.

Frowns will be formed.

But I don’t expect the distorted expressions to understand my life.

Because my life is my journey, walked in my shoes, my heels, my flats, my sneakers, my boots, my naked feet.

Yes, I did alright, may not be perfect, but right.

On witnessing thirty seven revolutions of our planet around the sun, I wish myself a very happy birthday, a happy life.

I did right by wishing myself, or did I?

By setting my norms for myself, I have always done right. 🙂 😉 🙂

20190314_124103

…Ashu Bolar

Ten years, a decade, an experience 

The year 2009, yes, that’s when I started blogging, a birthday month start-up. And 10 years of writing made me learn-unlearn many things, about myself, on surroundings, in life. An Experience.

Hmmm, looking back, it has been a great feeling altogether…friends, books, knowledge, coffee times, selfies…time well spent. A Great Experience.

Some baggage shed, some still to be. Some minor changes, some major adaptabilities. Some faded memories, some still afresh. Some forgotten, some still around. Some work completed, some new beginnings. Some dreams fulfilled, some hopes ahead. A Beautiful Experience.

I know I have changed, a better version of me than yesterday–a process I would like to adhere to on everyday basis. So yes, a decade gone, another begins…Awaiting The Next Exciting Experience…

Thanks to all those following, liking, commenting, sharing, reading, visiting my blog. Please feel free to connect with me on my Email id (ashubolar@gmail.com) or Facebook Page (AshuBlogs) or Messenger anytime.

Me in 2009 and in 2019…Changed? Right!

2019…Being hopeful…While still dreaming…

– Ashu Bolar

Women’s Day…

My day began with silencing the alarm vibration on my mobile phone, only to notice many good wishes, some motivational quotes, a few creatives–all wishing Happy Women’s Day.

A good start of the day.

Next, had a meeting. Went well.

Next, thought of carrying something for my colleagues; was wondering what, and there I saw a Mad Over Donuts (MOD) outlet. Ordered donuts, followed by the unexpected at the billing counter. The person asked me for identity proof, and I was thinking, “Since when did retail stores started asking for identity proof!” It took me by surprise, but on asking why, the reason stated made my day. It was to check my birth date as I get discount equal to my age.

Felt good to be old today! 🙂 😉

My next question was, “What if the customer is 75 years old lady?” It seems age limit for discount is 50, with conditions apply. But 50% discount too isn’t bad!

No, no…I am yet to be 50…long way to go, however, I liked the marketing initiative.

Well, donuts were great. They always are.

So far, the day has been good.

Have a great day ladies. And if you happen to come across an MOD outlet, I think it’s worth your time visiting today. 😉

FB_IMG_1552036991220

MOD Image Credit: MOD Facebook Page

Happy Women’s Day to all the ladies out there!!!

– Ashu Bolar