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No scarcity of Jacks of all!

Click here to read in Gujarati
Today, just for some change in topic and also to entertain you, I am here with this Article. Before I compose some episodes from my past memory, I would like to twist the word ‘Jack’ slight differently. Automobile owners know about jack and we see that this workshop tool bears the loads of all vehicles from light to heavy always in its position down on earth as a servant, but never up as a master! ‘Jack’ is a proper noun, famous in nursery rhymes also such as “Jack and Jill, went up the Hill” and “Little Jack Horner, sat in the Corner”. But here, I have no concern with all those Jacks.

In figure of speech or idiomatic narration, the meaning of ‘Jack of all, but master of none’ is related with a person and not with the jack, the tool that I mentioned earlier. This saying is applied to a person who might be competent with many skills but not outstanding performer in any one. One more shadow meaning, contradictory to above while speaking only ‘Jack of all’, is as a compliment to somebody who can handle the most situations smartly.

We might have witnessed many Jacks who try to be a grocer with just a single dry ginger*. Their little learning, sometimes, might prove to be harmful or dangerous to us. We should be careful of such boastful persons pretending that they know everything. We should think for 999 times before having their help for the solutions of our problems. We should salute them at the distance of 5.48064 meters. The Linear measuring unit Gaj (2 feet)** in Gujarati is out of date and therefore I have converted it into metric calculation!

Now, let us come to the main link of our talk with illustrations of some 1.5 times wiser (દોઢ ડાહ્યા)guys. They are always proud of declaring them as ‘Jacks of all”. The world is over-crowded with them and therefore we have never to face with any short-supply of them! Such a stranger happens to meet you easily on a Railway platform. He is there to see off his relatives. He turns towards you and begins to talk with you. He favors you with an unsolicited advice that the particular last night train always runs crowded and if you have no reservation, you should better go to the yard from where the train is going to arrive on the platform. You follow his advice, go there, occupy the upper berth and sleep down. Early in the morning, when you wake up, you find yourself and your compartment on the very same Railway Station. Now, you realize that the compartment was dropped off to be shunted to that particular train.

Above episode is not fabricated, but it bears the label of fact with it. I have presented it in a style as if you-you have been the hero of that comical tragedy. Still, I’ll not let you go as I want to give you the roll of another hero of one more episode. But, for this, my prime condition is that you must be a male because I wish to send you to a barber’s shop for your shaving; yes, only for shaving, not for getting your hair-cut. Morning hours are always busy in this industry, but you are lucky. You enter a shop where all chairs are vacant. Perhaps, the owner only is there as his staff is yet to resume duties. You occupy one chair and primary job for creating lather with soap starts to soften your beard covering the territory of your face.

Now, you count the minutes! One, Three, Five… Oh! Ten!!! That fellow is not prepared to take razor in hand and start shaving. You presume that he is doing so just to provide you an extremely close shave service with no irritation. But, the layer of lather is getting thicker and thicker. You look like a Santa-Claus with white artificial beard in front mirror. Being the brush very hard, you feel irritated in hair roots, skin and mussels of your cheeks. Now, you cry out, “Why, why, O Mister! What’s wrong with you? What are you doing?”

In hesitating tone of speech, the poor fellow whispers, “Sorry Sir! I am not the hair-dresser. I am the friend of the owner of this shop. He has gone somewhere on bicycle saying that he would soon return. I thought I may save your shave-time with this primary job. He will be just coming. Excuse me, Sir!”

But, you are not losing your temper because you are confused. You are in custody of the soul of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. ‘To laugh and not to laugh’ is a question! Besides, ‘To be and not to be angry’ is also a bigger question for you! Lastly, Pointing to him a chair, you say simply: “Have your seat there and be relaxed, my friend (you stupid!).”

Just before, the lather of soap might begin to get dry and particles fall down, the owner enters the shop as a savior of the dummy barber to bring him out of his miserable situation. No sooner does the owner step into the shop, the helpless guy quits the premises carrying his pitiful face similarly just as a mouse runs away seeing a cat.

The mouse of your computer is in grip of your hand to scroll further, am I right? But sorry! Your another episode is over, my Article is over and my time is also over here!

Byes… see you again,

With regards,

I am

– Valibhai Musa
August 30, 2008

* સૂંઠના ગાંગડે ગાંધી થવું!

** નવ ગજના નમસ્કાર!


Posted by on August 30, 2008 in Article, લેખ, gujarati, Human behavior, Humor, MB


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(387) My quoted Quotes in my Posts (10)

(148) “A man, not interested in Literature, Music (Classical – as it is the ancient verse) or any Art, is just like an animal without a tail and horns.” (A Sanskrit Verse)

(149) “Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled (lame), thought and speculation at a standstill.” (Barbara W. Tuchman) 

# Life and Literature

(150) “Error is committed unknowingly and innocently, but blunder is backed by strong intension and sometimes hasty thoughtlessness for doing so.”  (Valibhai Musa)

(151) “Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half sorrow.” (A Swedish proverb)

(152) “A balanced life is the only key to preserve the prosperity for a long time.” (An unknown source) 

(153) “You will never have any more time than you have today.” (William George Plunkett) 

(154) “One should also recognize the opportunities as they, sometimes, come open-faced and, sometimes, disguised.” (Valibhai Musa)

(155) “Our temptations and efforts to gather the whole world within our arms or under our feet are futile just as a hen tries to gather her chicks, wandering here and there, under her wings.” (Valibhai Musa)

#  Lose and long on life long

(156) “To be human means to feel inferior. (Alfred Adler)

(157) “Nature is the best physician and that it should be allowed to function without the intrusion of meddlesome interference.” (Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine and a Greek Physician) 

(158) “The beloved of the Almighty are: the rich who have the humility of the poor, and the poor who have the magnanimity of the rich.” (Sheikh Saadi, a Persian man of literature)

# Lady with the lantern !

(159) “I would suggest that when a person has a thought of doing anything serious against the law, it should go to a quiet place and think about it seriously before it does.” (William George Bonin, a murderer, who was executed about a decade ago in America had uttered his last words)

(160) “If you hear that someone is speaking ill of you, instead of trying to defend yourself, you should say, ‘He obviously does not know me very well, since there are so many other faults he could have mentioned.’” (Epictetus, a Greek Philosopher)

(161) “Behave with others as you would expect others to behave with you.” (A Slogan)

# Hear-says or rumors

(162) “Silence of good people encourages evil indirectly.” (Valibhai Musa)

# Paying Respect to the Late Mr. ‘Sufi’

(163) “Just to prevent the wars, walls should be built in the minds of the people.” (An unknown source) 

(164) “We see that this song of hate has not benefited humanity.” (Mahatma Gandhi)

#  Life on earth, possible but not safe !

(165) ’‘To do  and not to do is a question.” (Shakespeare)

# No scarcity of Jacks of All !

(166) “A little learning may be perfect if style of presentation goes with it”. (A Saying)

# Art of Balanced Exaggeration in Conversation – 1

(167) “Poetry is an art of soul.” (An unknown source)

(168) “Exaggeration is to paint a snake and add legs.” (A Proverb) 

(169) “Some so speak in exaggerations and superlatives that we need to make a large discount from their statements before we can come at their real meaning.” (Tryon Edwards) 

# Art of Balanced Exaggeration in Conversation – 2

(170) “Opening of a mall in a city puts an end to the business of thousands of hawkers and traders. This mall culture will plunge the middle class into a greater financial crisis and turn hawkers into beggars.” (Medha Patkar, an Activist)  

# Rivalry of two retail trade sectors in India

(171) “Over diversification is only good for those who don’t know what they are doing, If you are sure that you know five good stocks then have faith in yourself and distribute your money among them instead of buying thirty random companies that you know nothing about. Diversification can scientifically reduce your returns especially when you believe that few stocks will go up in price by a good percentage.” (Warren Buffet, the richest man in the world)

# Strategies in Bearish Stock Market

(172) “One of my colleagues asked if I was lying in the emergency room critically ill, would I prefer a doctor with technical excellence, or one who was compassionate and caring? I replied neither. Why should a patient need to choose? A competent Physician must be both.” (Dr. Gabriel Smilkstein)

#  Dr. P. J. Shah, a tender-hearted Physician will be missed

(173) “One should save money against hard times, save wife at the sacrifice of own riches, but invariably one should save own soul even at the sacrifice of wife and riches.” (Chanakya)

(174) “If a country is to be corruption free and become a nation of beautiful minds, I strongly feel there are three key societal members who can make a difference. They are the father, the mother and the teacher.” (Kelly Preston)

#  Rising above Corruption – A General Review

(175) “The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four persons is suffering from mental illness. Think of your three best friends and if they are okay, then the fourth that remains is you.” (Rita Mae Brown) 

#  Who is really insane? – ‘Seldom’ such Posts (3)

-Valibhai Musa 

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Posted by on August 5, 2013 in Quotes


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(386) Best of 5 years ago this month August -2008 (16)

Click on 

No Scarcity of Jacks of all !

Life on earth, possible but not safe !

Rays of hope in ways of humanity

-Valibhai Musa 


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(329) In Light Mood (Introduction) – Prof. Mukesh Raval (2)

(329) In Light Mood (Introduction) – Prof. Mukesh Raval (2)


In a hot, draught prone and a border region of Banaskantha where life is not an easy going story, everyone is blessed with a clear and sharp thinking process and a broad view of life and world which develops gradually from the encounters of brutality and harshness of life which the world labels as philosophy. Only a few decades ago when the life here was dependent on agricultural produce only and when there were no signs of industrial development or infrastructural progress, it was the tendency of the people here to sit together and discuss the grave issues of humanity, morality, society, nationalism and even international issues like war etc. .

Valibhai is a son of this burning soil and he has inherited the philosophical bent of mind to interpret various problems that life offers in his own, distinctive and exclusive way. Adding up in his vast experiences of life is his similarly vast reading of literature, sociology, psychology and economics. In this collection of essays, the reader will find the accumulated source of knowledge and wisdom. Actually the essays or the expositions are written in a newer form of literature which is “Online Blog Writing”. In his colloquial and lucid language, Valibhai offers us a unique blend of subjects touching delicately a local, a national or an international event or topic. His range is exhaustive and the treatment is of a neutral essayist. The readers will definitely be amused to see the author’s sense of humor which makes his essays and articles worth reading and genuine pieces of literature. Moreover, Valibhai runs an Online Blog named “William’s Tales” which is multi-lingual and receives the hundreds of comments from his wide circle of readers.

In his first essay “Over Sensitiveness”, he takes this weakness of human nature as a topic and delineates his deepest thoughts with touches of humor and quotes from the world renowned authors. He begins this essay with a brief story “The death of a Government clerk” by Anton Chekhov. At the end of the essay, he proves that over sensitiveness is the toughest obstacle in the way of uplifting the self. In his next article which is in a series named ‘Art of Balanced Exaggeration in Conversation’, he humorously takes us to a tour of some events of his life and simply states that a little exaggeration in the conversation is not dangerous but the alert listener would definitely discount it to reach the truth. He quotes from a proverb,” Exaggeration is to paint a snake and add legs.”

Valibhai takes such topics into consideration that the title of it surely lures the reader to have a taste of it. In his next essay titled, ”No scarcity of Jacks of all” he beautifully and humorously describes the habits of some people who try to be a grocer with just a single ginger. He invents new phrases in English from his mother tongue like “1.5 times wiser’ and in a Hamletian fashion he writes “To laugh and not to laugh”,” to be and not to be angry”

In his one more series of articles which he titled as “Seldom such posts” he takes upon a popular debatable topic and takes the reader deep within the topic with his new found dimensions and innovative interpretations. His mind is such a fertile land that it grows newer and newer ideas. One such idea is “Shoe missiles”. In his article on “The sense of humor”, he Quotes then Prime Minister of Britain, Winston Churchill. I restrict myself to quote that conversation as the readers would love to find it out and read for themselves.

Some of his articles are absolutely research based and make the sensitive reader brood over it. The book is full of events, characters, humor, witty remarks, well known quotations and one can find the talent of a genuine essay writer on every page. Besides it, it has some beautiful translations of some wonderful poems and lastly an interview which the readers would find as a vacation bonus.

I quote from the translation of the poem “A Flute Vendor”

“Four annas only!

Buy and revel,

Day and night,

In heavenly melody!”

Four annas each?

Sell for an anna.

“No sir , no.”

“Will return to my village

Though they remain unsold.”

“This is no firewood stock.”

I hope that the collection will be appreciated by readers from all over the world as it is to be published in an E-book version. I wish that soon we have another collection of its kind, as Valibhai‘s fertile mind will grow more and more finer ideas to write articles upon. All the Best.

Prof. Mukesh Raval

(North Gujarat University)

3rd May 2012.

Note : – You may click here to preview my e-book ‘In Light Mood’.


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‘સબ બંદરકે બ્યૌપારીઓ’ ની કોઈ અછત ખરી!

Click here to read in English
મારા આજના લેખનું શીર્ષક એ મારા મૂળ અંગ્રેજી શીર્ષક “No scarcity of Jacks of all! નો ભાવાનુવાદ છે, એટલે શબ્દે શબ્દ મેળવી લેવાની કડાકૂટમાં પડતા નહિ! મારા વિષયમાં બદલાવ લાવવા તથા તમારું દિલ બહેલાવવા આજે હું તમારી સામે ઉપસ્થિત છું. મારી ભૂતકાલીન યાદદાસ્તમાંથી કોઈક ઘટનાઓને અહીં રજૂ કરું તે પહેલાં હું Jack શબ્દને થોડોક જુદી જ રીતે મરડું છું. વાહનમાલિકો ‘Jack’ વિષે સારી જાણકારી ધરાવતા હોય છે. આપણે પણ જાણતા હોઈએ છીએ કે વર્કશોપ કે વાહનો માટેનું આ સાધન બધા જ પ્રકારનાં હળવાંથી માંડીને ભારે વાહનોનો ભાર ખમે છે અને એક નમ્ર સેવકની જેમ તેનું સ્થાન હંમેશાં જમીન ઉપર જ રાખે છે. તે કદીયે માલિકપણાનો ભાવ બતાવવા ઊંચુ સ્થાન ગ્રહણ કરતો નથી. વળી Jack એ સંજ્ઞાવાચક નામ પણ છે અને બાળકોના અંગ્રેજી પૂર્વ પ્રાથમિક કક્ષાના અભ્યાસમાં એ નામવાળાં તાલબદ્ધ ગેય કાવ્યો પણ છે, જેવાં કે “Jack and Jill, went up the Hill” અને “Little Jack Horner, sat in the Corner”. પણ અહીં મારે એ બધાં Jack નામધારી છોકરાંવ સાથે કોઈ મતલબ નથી.

આલંકારિક કે મુહાવરા રૂપે બોલાતું ‘Jack of all, but Master of none’ એ કથન સામાન્ય રીતે ગમે તે વ્યક્તિને લાગુ પડે છે, નહિ કે ખાસ કોઈ Jack નામે વ્યક્તિ કે પછી ઉપર ઉલ્લેખાએલ વર્કશોપના Jack એ સાધનને! આ મુહાવરો એવી વ્યક્તિને અનુલક્ષીને વપરાય છે કે જે ઘણાં બધાં કામોમાં જાણકારી ધરાવનાર હોઈ શકે, પણ કોઈ એકાદમાં પણ શ્રેષ્ઠ પ્રભુત્વ તો ન જ ધરાવતી હોય. વળી માત્ર ‘Jack of all’ જ બોલાતું હોય, ત્યારે તેનો છાયા અર્થ એવો પણ લેવાય છે કે જે તે વ્યક્તિ એવી કાબેલ હોય કે જે બધી જ પરિસ્થિતિઓને ચપળતાપૂર્વક પહોંચી વળવા સક્ષમ હોય.

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