Asian paints and Louis Berger paints – the ads look the same !

Have you wondered why is it that both asian paints and louis berger are running ads which have a starking similarity. It is so close, that you wonder if at all the idea was stolen from the other and there was a race to actually get the ad to the TV.
The louis berger (don’t remember the exact brand of the paint/emulsion), shows a couple dreaming up the colors of their bedroom walls, and fighting it out, all the while sleeping cozily on their bed. The screenplay of the ad shows the colors changing on the walls, while the couple is happily asleep.
Over to asian paints’ ad, and here you see a family, contesting the choice of colors of each other. The wife changing the patterns, the kid changing the colors and then the old lady (for the benefit of doubt the mother-in-law) choosing a color and they all liking it. Rangon se khelo being the tagline.
See the similarity ! I’m not sure who came with the ad first on TV, but whoever was second, I guess, if not having the egg on their face, might have been dubbed to have lacked originality. As for the ad itself, I think the ad is passe, may be not outright loud as Shalini Chopra ke ghar mein jhankna. Part of the loss of effect might be because of a close duplicate running for another company.

Freakonomics (no more boring textbook eco !) – a definite read

My memories of economics as a subject of study dates back to school. Social studies as a subject had four parts – Geography, History, Economics and Civics. Economics was nothing more than the data about the allocation of the various five year plans in the country (how much did education get allocated in the second five year plan yada yada..). Not the mightily interesting subject that I think it is now (despite the hard work put in by my teacher. The class though, ensured that my interest in history increased).
That was the last time I read anything about economics. And even though, I read about Freakonomics, I didn’t think that it would be an interesting book. I thought it would be one of those self-prophesying book. And how wrong was I. This book is a definite read for anyone who likes to see data to corroborate any fact.
Both Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, ask seemingly unrelated questions and start debunking various misconceptions / unknown patterns. Do you see a pattern between cheating teachers and sumo wrestlers ? I didn’t – till I read their explanation (which by the way is my favorite chapter of the book). They present enough data for the reader, who is allowed to experience the ahaa moment on their own (apart from they explaining it). The various chapters of the book attack various seemingly unrelated topics of our daily lives and tell the reader what he/she is missing to see.
If not anything else, this book will provide a different angle for you to look at the everyday events. And is this an economics book ? I think it is, but am I sure ? May be not. But hey, come on, the authors themselves say that the book doesn’t have any unifying theme. It is a collage of thoughts, with a certain hidden order for the reader to discover. Read it – you won’t regret the time spent on it. It sure has changed my perception of economics and got me interested in this subject.