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BackPUDDLES 2005

Things really went out of hand here.

To start off, it didnt quite start off with a bang with Vishak and the poor fellow from IIM Bangalore presenting their paper to a totally empty audi except for the two poor judges. Next up was the issue of total chaos everywhere due to multiple events being held together despite not being scheduled together. A primary reason being the absolute lack of control over timely starts to scheduled events. So we had instances where event organisers were seen roaming around the place 30 minutes after their event was scheduled to have started, looking for participants or in some cases, including us, judges.

Further pandemonium ensued once the 4L game got going, what with more than 60 participants flocking our preliminary qualification round. Suddenly it seemed as if no one else was there. And there wasn't. For the intelligent junta of IIMK, the hosts of this event, had decided to utilise this time for visiting homes, girlfriends, catching up on lost sleep, basically anything but showing for just watching if not participating.

What I found a bit sad was the fact that the IIMB team could not participate in our game simply because they were not allowed to leave the audi once their paper presentation was over. Sad, sad, sad. I wanted to see them getting beaten by someone else :-(

Shortlisting done, we got down to the real business of the Maya Bazaar. With products as innovative as Magic Potion, Magic Broom & Magic Ball to be marketed, it was imperative that the teams use every means at their disposal to ensure maximum visibility for their product and victory for themselves.

With this objective in mind, the teams entered the bidding for the various advertising avenues available to them like the MESS Notice Board, the 4L Maya Bazaar counter, the 4L Times newsletter etc. And it was serious fun watching teams bidding up to ludicrous levels in a desperate bid to get atleast one of these. In fact, one team went so far as to bid almost the entire money they had, leaving them with nothing to buy anything else that they would need for their work.

The teams had a free reign in deciding their marketing strategy and some of them did come up with really innovative and cool concepts. Kunal went loco jumping all about the place promoting his BALL PAL. The Magic BroomX team also put in a lot of effort in the form of approaching people and informing them about their product while one Magic Potion team actually went into the mess, singing paens to the virtues of their product.

The highlight of the game was the Product Launch, scheduled for the evening of the first day. Kunal's team consisting of IIMK Heavyweights like Vishak, JC, Dixon and of course Kunal himself left everybody floundering with their superb presentation, made lively by JC's impromptu improvisations. This guy has some serious talent, I swear.

The most popular presentation, in terms of crowd response, though, was the Fashion Show by the NIILM-CMS team. With three babes, decked in pieces of their Magic Broom, showing off their ramp walking skills, the poor frustrated guys of IIMK had no chance but to capitulate and capitulate they did, with atleast 12 guys actively seeking out or having already sought the contact details of the girls. Females at IIMK, take notice. Your future assignments and project submission might be endangered.

The 4L Times, newsletter was also scheduled to be published and circulated the same night and it was during that my old friend, philosopher, guide, MURPHY's LAW, decided to get into the thick of things. First the printer decided to take a day, err night, off. Having found a way around that, thanks to the persistence and unending patience of Anurag ITCOMM THAKUR Pandey, the Xerox machine also went on Sympathetic Strike (which is not a strike but a mere misconduct, as per Mr. Noronha) leaving me in the unenviable position of arranging for 400 copies of a newsletter that had to be distributed in everyone's rooms before they woke up.

I finally managed to coax the Xerox guy to go to NIT Calicut and get the job done using his shop there. The newsletter was done on time and was circulated on time, even to the external participants and Alumni, two of whom were pretty impressed by our professionalism ;-) (team Backwaters has us to thank for the accolades they got from Alumni)

The next day went more or less the same way as the first apart from the remarkable inability of Prashant PAKOW Kowshik to attract participants for his Informalz and the insistence of the Backwaters committee that Informalz WILL HAPPEN pretty soon. Pakow had his revenge finally when he conducted a JAM for god alone knows for how many hours. All I know is that, I saw a participant actually dozing off while the event was going on.

BackPUDDLES 2005 came to an end with an ALL NIGHT Movie Marathon that lasted not more than 4 hours ;-) after some serious altercations between Prashant Kumar and Vikhyat Srivastava.

Finally, back to the normal grind of sleep, watch movie, eat OUT, watch movie, sleep. Yippee !!!

Hey, I forgot what '4L' really meant - as in, it was acronym for....?
If you recall, can you let me know at my email? Thanks.

- Abhinav
(abhinav.g@gmail.com)

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