Saturday, August 24, 2013

Being attracted to a pretty girl

I have a condition, I've had it ever since my 5 senses and my cognitive abilities became fully functional. I realized I had this condition when I witnessed a pretty girl for the first time. Its called, "Being attracted to a pretty girl".
I think I was 5 years old when it first happened. I saw her and she made me feel like I must have felt when I saw my first sunrise. She had made my life feel so much brighter. I could feel her presence even when I didn't look at her while she was around. Just like the sun her beauty radiated across the room and made me feel all warm and funny !!
From a distance looking at her felt nice and I kept it that way. As soon as I reached school I used to search for her and once I looked at her from a distance I felt good and ready to start my day!
One day I was walking in one of the corridors towards when all of a sudden I heard someone call my name. I turned and there she was, blazing like a sun in front of my face, her beauty too much for me to handle. I started shaking and perspiring. She asked me something and I didn't know what to say because even though I could hear her, I couldn't understand a word she was saying. Good for me, she looked around and found someone else to burn with her beauty. It was difficult to stand in front of her without feeling overwhelmed. But when she walked away, I felt relaxed and the cooling down process felt heavenly, like strolling through a green tunnel with cool wind blowing. I saw her talk to this other guy and it felt nice looking at her from a distance once again. I knew her voice now so I used to speculate what she was saying by playing her voice in my mind.
By the time I reached high school, I discovered that she (the sun) now had a few planets (guys) revolving around her. I used to feel amused looking at the tiny solar system, one of many, in my school. I was used to her overwhelming presence now and didn't need her presence to have a bright day. Priorities had changed and I was preparing for competitive exams to get into a good college, which I eventually did. All this time I was secretly hoping to be a part of some solar system myself in my college.
In school I may not be the planet, but I was a part of the solar system, as a comet. In college, it got worse, from a comet, I became Halley's comet.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Jana Gana Mana - the Goosebumps song

If you've lived in India, you've perhaps heard this on the Republic Day, Independence Day, school morning assemblies, and in cinema halls before starting of a movie. And when this song begins to play, you've surely seen people stand up in attention, leaving whatever they're doing and observing silence, their way of paying respect to their national anthem, the Indian National Anthem.
Every morning of my school life I've heard this great song composed and scored by Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore and sung by millions of school children across the country. I have sung along too and never ever has it happened that I haven't felt this surge of blood in my vein, that for those 52 seconds makes me feel an integral part of this nation. There's nothing else I can think of, nothing else I want to think of when national anthem is sung, even just the music itself is enough to take me back to those school days where every morning was filled with this renewed vigor while singing this song that very soon I will grow up and become successful and do something for myself, my family, my friends and my nation.

Monday, July 22, 2013

The Mighty Sky

I look up at the vast sky spread over me and marvel at its expanse and grandness.
During daytime, I see the white clouds like cotton balls, floating under the light blue sky. If only I could lie on those soft, comfortable looking clouds and ride throughout the blue scape of the sky. I see the sky talking to me, making faces and gestures through the clouds.

At night, I see faintly twinkling starts sprinkled across the sky in vivid formations, showing the sparkly nightlife of the sky. Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed by the depth of the vastness of the sky that if the world could turn upside down, with earth on my head, then I would love the exhilarating feeling of falling into the blackness of the night sky and on my way perhaps touch few starts, maybe take a ride on a shooting star.
I receive both the sun and the rain from the mighty sky. Whenever I look up, its always there, spread over me like a blanket in cold, like an umbrella in rain, unbroken and untorn, with a silent promise to keep me safe and make me feel blessed, if I look up at it in anticipation.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Promises are NOT meant to be broken

Today I broke a promise. I thought it wasn't a big deal because how can one person's presence/absence make a difference, especially if that person is me. Apparently it does, and I don't like it. I feel sorry for what I've not done, i.e., keeping my promise but the sad part is that this isn't the first time.
Early on in my life I had realized that I am not good at keeping promises so I didn't make any promise. The only time I made promises was when the only way to get out of that situation was to say 'yes' to a promise, especially with my mother and father. Most of the times things resolved themselves, and parents can be very forgiving so they'd have got used to this nature of mine.
Every once in a while I feel like making a promise to my friend who considers calling me for a movie even after my "no" on everytime he invites me for a movie. And as expected, the promise is broken most of the times. This bad habit has plagued me during my masters where I failed to get research publications and in my job as well, where I couldn't meet deadlines.
And now a days it happens everyday. I start my day with some plan, by the end of the day most of those things remain unchecked in my list. Instead I end up doing few new things.
So I had promised to my friend that I'd attend Orations '13 to listen to her speech. My bad habit prevailed and I overslept. By the time I woke up, the contest was already over. It seems my absence may have affected her performance. If that indeed is true, then I must do something about my callous attitude towards life and people because now its affecting others as well and I hate it when that happens.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


I don't know exactly who started it, but I've seen people post this as their status on Facebook: "Unemployed".
Intriguing, I know. Once you see the number of likes, you surely would want to know more. Read the comments you'll know. "Congrats", "You deserve it buddy", "Well done", "I wish I could be unemployed this way" etc.
Now why would anyone get accolades for being unemployed !! Did he/she quit because of their mean manager, or because the work wasn't fit for that person's profile? Was it because he/she was underworked or underpaid or because he/she didn't like the work very much? Was it an act of bravery to quit such that he/she would prefer to stay unemployed rather than work at your former company?
The truth, is far more stranger than what one might expect. The person has in fact secured admission into one of the good colleges for MBA or MS !! Surprise Surprise !! So instead of posting, "Got admission into so and so college", they choose to post, "Unemployed" !! Perhaps he/she has not tasted the desperation/frustration during unemployment!
Now I am at a loss of words at this stupid, ridiculous act! I am not sure if I should admire this person for his hard work and focus to get admission into a reputed institute for a degree program of his/her choice, or lament his/her ludicrous choice of words!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Thorn Within

If you want to get a person out of depression/anger, encouragement may look like a good idea but its not. At best it could be a band-aid solution and at worse it may push the person further into the abyss of gloom.
A depressed/angry person is a person with a thorn stuck in his/her feet. He/she is constantly in pain. They can be given pain killers which will have relief for sometime but that will soon wear off, they can be distracted by engaging them in something that will keep their mind off the pain. They could even be asked not to walk but they would have to walk, of course, for some basic tasks that must be done.
Take the thorn out and the pain will soon be gone. So, treat the disease, not attenuate the symptoms.
We all carry thorns in our feet as we walk through life. Some chose to take it out and throw it away, i.e., they choose to move on with life, leaving behind their grieving self and hurtful past. While some others think that if they keep walking they may get used to the pain, instead of taking that extra effort to bend down and pull the thorn out once and for all.
Never be in the second category because you may not get used to the pain, and when the realization finally catches up with you, it hurts really bad and life becomes hell. The thorn must be removed. It could be you, it could be someone else who's helping you out, who removes it. In fact while the thorn is being pulled out, it hurts slightly more, but you'll know its worth it once you start living a painless life again.
Chances are, you already know the thorn and you belong to second category. You don't have to walk with the thorn in your feet, you can pull it out.

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

The Cobbler

There's this cobbler who sits at the end of the street at White Fields, besides Fresh supermarket. While visiting my friend who stays at White Fields or while going to office, I visit him when I have a shoe problem. He does his work very well and seems like a nice person. Moreover I think he spends more time at his workplace (streetside) than I do at my desk in office because once I saw him at work in the morning, at around 10 am, then again saw him sitting at his spot at 6 pm. When I asked him how long will he be there, he replied, 7 pm.
He is one of those who rely on daily wages. What is appalling to me is the low rates he charges. I'm sure its the rate people generally pay to the cobbler but I feel its not decided properly. Their earnings depend on how much work they have put in, rather than how critical the work is. Critical work can demand higher pay but I think he is oblivious of this fact.
Last weekend I went to him to get my shoe stitched which had torn off from the front. It was almost ruined but I decided to go to a professional, i.e., the cobbler, in case there's still something that could be done to save it.
I took off my shoe and showed it to him and asked him to stitch it up. Very carefully he ran the thread through it and in 5 minutes, he stitched it so well that it was as good as new !! I picked up the shoe and examined it, trying to tear it off at the same place but it was solid work, the shoe didn't budge. I started looking into my wallet to search for change for Rs. 30/40 because I assumed that would be his pay. I asked him, "Bhaiya, kitna hua?" (How much should I pay?)
Rs. 10, he said. I asked him to repeat, again he said, Rs. 10.
Standing there at 1:30 PM under the blaring sun and its sweltering heat, I felt he had asked for more because I would be more than happy to pay more. Perhaps he quoted his price based on the amount of thread he used and the time it took, but he had no idea how important it was for me, that he had given me at least a month or two more with these shoes, thereby delaying me the expense of Rs. 1000 on a new pair of shoes. I could have offered him more, but I figured that it would have been odd, or would it have been?

Next Episode

Saturday, May 04, 2013

I'm the best

Feels so good saying it out loud and actually believing it!
Actually one can be best, it depends on how we're looking at it. If the universe of reference is narrowed down, one can be best easily. Say you're a doctor and all of a sudden at a gathering, a doctor is needed and you're the only doctor there, what then? Of course, you're the best person to help! Ok if no doctor is there, what then? What if you've done a basic course on first aid, you're the best person to help. Even if you know nothing about medicine or helping a patient, if you even take an initiative like making the person feel comfortable, calling an ambulance, you're the best person at that time because you have taken that initiative to improve the situation and help someone.
You don't have to be the best in the world to be the best, you get opportunity everyday to be the best, to make someone's life better, to make this world a better place.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Silent Night

It is past 11 PM. Most of the people have gone to bed, most of the lights in the neighborhood has been turned off. In this semi-darkness ambiance, I walk out into my dark terrace and stand at the fence. I enjoy doing this every night after dinner.
Silent night has certain calming effect if you allow it in.

While standing in the darkness at my terrace, surrounded by few other buildings, I stretch my neck upwards and look at the small part of the sky that is visible to me. I see the moon at the far end, and the stars around it. Sometimes I just keep looking at the moon and realize why moon makes sky look so beautiful. And as a poet would have said to his lover, "the way the moon makes sky so much more beautiful, you, my love, make my life so much more beautiful."

Sometimes I walk out of my apartment and on to the dark street. I casually stroll around, taking in the stillness of the night and calming down, feeling relaxed within. I hear the sounds in the silence of the night, an occasional barking of dogs, or honking of horns demanding the watchman to open the gate. I feel the sudden movement of the gentle cool breeze, breaking the monotonicity and stillness of the night. I feel relaxed looking at the deserted roads lighted in parts by the streetlights, at the closed shops that was doing business till even an hour ago, the blinking yellow traffic light that meant I didn't have to wait for it to turn red to cross the road. The world seems to have stopped for a moment so I feel that I can also stop running, stop thinking, stop worrying for a while.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Cheque it out

What I like about a Cheque is that you can crumble it or tear it into pieces and throw it away in anger but the actual amount/money is not lost... one can't really dare to do that with a note or a Demand Draft !! :P
This property of a cheque has often been exploited in movies where the hero tears off the cheque given to him by the heroine's father as a price to stay out of her life, and he says with style, "Nahi chaahiye aapke paise, main aapki beti se pyaar karta hon, aapke paiso se nahi !!" (English: I don't need your money, I love your daughter, not your money."
No wonder the heroine's father never offers cash or Demand Draft to the hero !! :P
In my case the cheque given to me by my father was kept by me with utmost care until I didn't know this unique property of cheque...
Now a cheque with sign of the account holder but without the amount, also called the blank cheque has also been used in movies a lot, but something I never got from my father!
Ironically, the heroine's father who hates the hero is ready to give a blank cheque to him but my father who loves me dearly never did that. Ironical!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Drunken Writer

"Damn it !! With every next day I feel I'm getting lousier at my writing."
Frustrated, Abhishek flungs away his pen. He holds the loose sheets and re-reads what he has written.
"This is bullshit!" He crumbles the sheets into his fist and throws them angrily towards the bin. It bounces off the wall behind the bin and falls outside the bin. Before he loses his temper and feels the urge to drink again, Abhishek takes a deep breath, gets up from his chair and walks to and fro in his room for a couple of minutes. He runs his fingers across his hair and observes his tummy come out and go in following his breathing rhythm, as he had learned in his meditation session last week.
Forcefully sitting back on his chair he takes a deep breath, jerks his neck sideways and rotates his wrists.
"That's it, I'll just write whatever comes to my mind, lets see what happens."

The man you just read about, is Abhishek Sainani, a 26 year old bestselling novelist, short-story writer and standup comedian. Two months ago a young boy met with an accident by his car, and he sped away without stopping to help the kid. He was heavily drunk and ignored the boy's pain which is unlike him. Although he got sober, the hangover of the guilt remains. Since then he has given up drinking and, although unaware, he subconsciously gave up writing as well. Now he lives in frustration of his lack of imagination and spark that had made him the most sought after storyteller.

He pulls out few fresh sheets of paper and starts scribbling whatever comes to his mind. He just writes, every word of the soliloquy in his mind. A few times he stops to edit, but eventually decides not to edit and simply continues writing. He finishes writing five sheet of pages and starts looking for more available sheets. From his cupboard he tears open a new bundle of white sheet of papers and gets back to his study-table with handful of them. He happens to glance at the sheets he had earlier written and sees that the first few sentences he had written are not the same, they have changed! They were very memorable, so he could distinctly remember them and so there was no mistake, the lines are different now! He reads the last few sentences and realizes they are not the same either!

He ignores it and continues writing. He is thrilled enough to be in the flow of writing now. Perhaps he was wrong, perhaps the lines never changed. Few minutes later he takes a toilet break. During that time he starts thinking what all he can add. "I think this guy should go and apologize to his sister for screaming at her like that. And then...", happily discussing with himself he returns to his desk and reads the last line he has written... and what he reads baffles him again, its not the one he had written !!

"Am I drunk? This only happens when I'm drunk. Did I drink today?" He feels flabbergasted. He is unable to recall what he did the whole day!
"I promised them I'll stop drinking. And I had stopped drinking! What's happening? Where are the sheets I had just written?"
He spreads out the sheets on his table, picking some of them and reading through them, and not being able to decide if the words have changed. With shaky knees, he leaves his room and walks out into the hall and looks into his closets and fridge to find any trace of liquor, but there's no liquor anywhere.
He gulps few sips of cold water from the fridge and walks back to his room. At the door he stops dead when he sees something hovering over the sheets. Squinting his eyes, he walks a little closer to see words glittering and hovering in mid air, one replacing the other on different sheets.

He starts sweating.
"I am definitely drunk. This only happens when I'm drunk. That's how I used to write stories, this was my spark, my magic trick that everyone called. I'm drunk. I must call Harsh."
With shaky fingers, after few minor edits, he is finally able to find and dial his number.
"Damn it, Harsh, please pick up the call." Abhishek blares into the mouthpiece, then pushes the disconnect button forcefully.
He walks out, gets into his car and drives away.

"Sorry officer, was I speeding?"
"Sir, are you drunk?"
"I don't know!"
The test confirms that he is in fact sober. Confused, Abhishek decides to drive back home. He walks in with uncertain steps, and his study table looks normal. He walks up to the sheets of paper. They look fine. He starts reading.
Yes, the words were the same, their positions had changed, and so had the overall meaning. Those five sheet of pages now tells the story of what had happened to him in last one year, including how he sped off, leaving that kid bleeding on the road, how he confessed this to his sister who helped him recover from his alcohol addiction and how he lost his 'spark' in storytelling. The last line towards the end was left incomplete, without a full stop, waiting for him to complete it, and perhaps resume the story from where he has left.