My (middle) name is Anand

For reasons unknown to me, my parents gave me a very Indian middle name. My mother, who has some Indian blood in her veins, says that my middle name was really supposed to “Anwar” (after Sadat) but they killed him before I was born and she took it as a bad sign and changed it to “Anand”.

Anyway, so I spent the first 30 years of my life basically using a middle initial…but when I went to India I promptly became “G. Anand Best”, thinking that I could just kinda blend in with my 1.3 billion fellow Indians on the sub-continent.

But here’s introductions usually went.

“Pankaj, meet Anand. Anand, Pankaj.”



“It’s an Indian name.”


“It’s your name?”


“But you’re not Indian.”

At which point, I usually resorted to producing photo ID. So much for blending in…


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