THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT 100

Wednesday, March 10, 2010
It’s a special issue that we hold in our hands today and hence a time to celebrate, and celebrate we will. For as someone said, “Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and celebrate the journey.” It’s been an amazing journey for 4Ps B&M. It stared as a dream, an idea, and over the years was nurtured and made grandiose by A. Sandeep, the most witty, dynamic and intelligent Editor of the magazine. He was, is and will be the backbone of this magazine. It’s geniuses like him and Sutanu Guru, Steven and Aditi who have made this magazine so popular and revered! 100 is after all a very special number and our 100th issue very special too. It symbolises commitment, consistency and great quality and trust which our readers have put in the magazine.

“Trust” is the keyword and various instances in the recent past have once again proved that this is the most important factor. No one has realised this more than Toyota. In February 2010, Toyota recalled hundreds of thousands of its cars from America and Japan due to faulty brakes resulting in huge losses. According to a survey, Toyota previously had a flawless reputation, with nearly 92% respondents trusting the brand almost blindly. Post the recall issue, only 66% consumers consider it reliable. In fact, in USA, about 26% judged Toyota to be of a lower quality than domestic brands. In this world of cut-throat competition, this is not good as competitors don’t miss a chance to beat you down... which is exactly what Ford did. It’s the only American car company to have survived the steepest sales downturn in decades – that too without a government bailout. When it comes to winning new customers and their trust and admiration, Ford has taken the lead and its showing in their balance sheets too. In 2009, Ford actually made profits – for the first time after fi ve years and thanks to the once-in-a-lifetime “golden” opportunity provided by Toyota. Ford now says there’ll be no “brakes” on its profitability even in 2010.

It is trust that has made Apple top the charts, third year in a row as “the world’s most admired company.” Apple generates a hysteria around its products. This year, its sales are generating the same hysteria. Just three years old, in the smart phone category and the iPhone has already become the world’s third largest smart phone maker. Apple doubled its iPhone sales last year to 25 million. It is trust built over the years by Disney due to its obsessive focus on product quality that has seen it get ranked No.1 in world class quality by consumers.

Trust is that intangible factor that keeps companies afloat & enables them to beat competition; trust is something we value most. It’s the trust that our readers have put in us that we have been able to reach the “100th issue” milestone. “100” after all is an interesting number. There seems to be a magical ring to it. Ask any cricket lover and he will be able to recount the magical and fastest 100 scored by Shahid Afridi against Srilanka in Nairobi. A 102 runs out of just 37 balls. If one 100 can get people so excited, then think of two 100s and you could even get a Bharat Ratna, if not deliriously happy to say the least! Sachin Tendulkar became the first cricketer in the history of one-day cricket to score a double hundred in Gwalior. Every Indian’s heart swelled with pride.

It’s interesting to note that the most powerful man on Earth is judged by the work he does in the first 100 days of taking oath. An odd custom, some may say, but that’s how it’s been since the days of Franklin D Roosevelt, who also took office at a time of dire economic crisis. Roosevelt used the first 100 days to jumpstart the economy and put people back to work. FDR’s first 100 days were the greatest, and no President has been able to equal that time when Democrats & Republicans worked as one! Barack Obama too had the boldest 100 days and more or less everyone felt his first 100 days were impressive as a leader! Yes, 100 seems to influence a lot of things as Albert Einstein once said, “I think and think for months and years. Ninety-nine times the conclusion is false. The hundredth time I am right”. Be it 100 runs, 100 days, or 100 conclusions, it’s one number that seems to be an important milestone to judge many things.

100!

‘Google’ was actually meant to be named “Googol” but due to a misspelling landed up as “Google”. ‘Googol’ means, one allowed by a 100 zeros. Dr. Kasner a prominent mathematician wanted a name for a very large number and Milton, his 9 year old nephew, came up with ‘Googol’!

Fascinating but true, sometimes what you think to be a hundred is not so. The famous “100 year war”, the longest war in history fought between England and France, actually went on for 116 years. The dictionary meaning of “centurion” would read as 100 soldiers, but typically a Roman centurion commands 80 soldiers. In Dhaka, a 100 mangoes equals 112 in the metric system, while in Dinjpur a 100 betel leaves is 64.

While on the number 100, here are some interesting quirky facts. Your daily cup of coffee contains more than 100 chemicals. When you sneeze, the sneeze it travels out of your mouth at over 100 miles per hour, and your heart beats over 100 thousand times a day. A “jiffy” is actually a unit of time for 1/100th of a second. The cat can produce over 100 vocal sounds and a shark can detect one part of blood in 100 million parts of water. Come to think of it, the Earth gets 100 tons heavier everyday due to falling space dust. The book by Gabriel Marquez listed as one of the best books of the twentieth century is called “100 years of solitude”.

If that’s not enough, then for all you people below 100 years of age, try this (13837) x (your age) x 73= a very interesting number. Check it out.

And as you mull over the impact of 100 in our lives, we hope you enjoy this 100th issue a hundred times more than any other. A 100 cheers to all as we celebrate this important milestone, for you all will surely agree there’s something special about 100.