Ramoji Rao e-mailing1One of the advantages of having a slightly uncommon first name is that you're more likely to get a [first name]@[the email provider] than your average Amit or Kiran or Lakshmi. As a result of my own slightly uncommon 1st name (=> the name is not taken) and coupled with the suspicion that just like the venerable Bhavani Shankar, most people with this name "to paidaa hote hi buDDhe ho gaye" (=> I'm the rare one rampant in cyberspace with this handle), I have successfully claimed the first name at google's, the institute's and the department's mail servers without needing to qualify it further.
This can be a double-edged sword as I was soon to find out.
The problem is when people get more qualified email ids in these mail servers, especially the popular ones, where you have the [firstname].[digit/letter] and so on. One small misprint, and the emails for the world caucus of Ramanands starts to pour in my mailbox. Which leads me to my present predicament: there is a gentleman who seems to have put my email id on his correspondence material, and so I get a lot of mail per week inviting me to conferences, asking my advice and seeking my recommendation (clearly this man is a big name in his social sphere). I end up politely telling his correspondents they're barking up the wrong tree, but soon I need to do some barking up the right tree myself to save all of us the trouble.
Especially before I get a kidnap ransom request a la Baburao Ganpatrao Apte.
1.: Ramoji Rao Speaking was the original Malayalam film from which came other hits such as "Arangetra Velai" and "Hera Pheri".