A forward that I received last week and appeared quite true for most of the Software Professionals, if not worldwide, at least for Indian IT Service Industry Professionals.
There was a contest in a company to write a fictional story for 500 words max which would start with the line "On a dark and foggy night, a small figure lay huddled on the railway tracks leading to the Bangalore station". This is what a guy wrote for the contest and surprisingly, it was adjudged the best short story :))
On a dark and foggy night, a small figure lay huddled on the railway tracks leading to the Bangalore station. At once I was held back to see someone in that position during midnight with no one around. With curiosity taking the front seat, I went near the body and tried to investigate it. There was blood all over the body which was lying face down. It seemed that a ruthless blow by the last train could have caused the end of this body which seemed to be that of a guy of around my age. Amidst the gory blood flow, I could see a folded white envelope which was fluttering in the midnight wind. Carefully I took the blood stained envelope and was surprised to see the phrase "appraisal letter" on it. With curiosity rising every moment, I wasted no time in opening the envelope to see if I can find some details about the dead guy. The tag around the body’s neck and the jazzy appraisal cover gave me the hint that he might be a software engineer. I opened the envelope to find a shining paper on which the appraisal details where typed in flying colors. Thunders broke into my ears and lightening struck my heart when I saw the appraisal amount of the dead guy!!!!! My God, it was not even, as much as the cost of the letter on which the appraisal details were printed…. My heart poured out for the guy and huge calls were heard inside my mind saying "no wonder, this guy died such a miserable death"… As a fellow worker in the same industry, I thought I should mourn for him for the sake of respect and stood there with a heavy heart thinking of the shock that he would have experienced when his manager had placed the appraisal letter in his hand. I am sure his heart would have stopped and eyes would have gone blank for few seconds looking at the near to nothing increment in his salary.
While I mourned for him, for a second my hands froze to see the employee’s name in the appraisal letter… hey, what a strange co-incidence, this guy’s name is same as mine, including the initials. This was interesting. With some mental strength, I turned the body upside down and found myself fainted for a second. The guy not only had my name, but also looked exactly like me. Same looks, same built, same name…. it was me who was dead there!!!!!!!! While I was lost in that shock, I felt someone patting on my shoulders. My heart stopped completely, I could not breathe and sprung in fear to see who was behind……… splash!!! Went the glass of water on my laptop screen as I came out of my wild dream to see my manager standing behind my chair patting on my shoulder saying, "wake up man? Come to meeting room number two. I have your appraisal letter ready".