24 April, 2009

Superbly mediocre or then some.

I look back at life and I know that I have wasted time, no matter how much I try to justify things. As a result, there are things which I could have done or should have tried to, but never did and now will not be able to.
Life for me had been a constant attempt to maintain a straight line - the shortest distance from one point to the other. (I have failed miserably at times in that as well)
Sure I can learn to play an instrument or come up with a fancy hobby now but I should have done it when I was younger and I did not. It is not as if I was under too much stress from studying that I could not do any of this even if I wanted to.No.
Even now, things are not getting any better. I should have saved more and spent less, should have gotten married by now (not for not trying this one though, but still), should have travelled more, exercised more, listened more, made more friends and known more people and so on. It is not that I have had a super busy job and I have been denied all this. No.
People say that one should stop to smell the roses. I am the guy who falls asleep next to the roses every day but never smells them. 
Never has circumstance given me the excuse for any of my behaviour. It is only the way I am.
The silver lining - I have started to look back and regret and maybe some day I will regret enough that I am moved to take some action. 
At business school, I was selected to apply for a scholarship with 20 others. There was a form which had two pages and most of it was about the academic and co-curricular state, national and international level achievements which an applicant would like to share with the interview board. I wanted to ask our mentors what my chances were if I did not have much (anything) to write about. Someone else, who later went on to become an investment banker at GS, asked his question before me. His question was whether he could attach extra sheets if the space was not enough.
I did not bother asking my question. I also did not get the scholarship.
The point is not about missing the scholarship. I think that it is one of the best scholarships in the country and even getting that chance to apply and failing to get the scholarship is the definite highpoint of my academic career. The point was that how was it that someone with a similar background and education had so much more to write about than I did. That day I realised that I had never even thought on these lines ever before. Life for me had been a constant attempt to maintain a straight line - the shortest distance from one point to the other. I have failed miserably at times in that as well.

Lessons for the future -
1. As my project partner from final year (MSA) used to say, "mukman, try to do round-trips in circles, never in straight lines"
2. Hurry up with everything!

19 April, 2009

Tube power

This is the week when Susan Boyle happened. She did not get much attention in the Indian press (I really need to write about the Times of India soon, they are beginning to piss me off more and more now) or even on TV, but she looks like swooping over the UK and the US. Google News today had over 3000 stories in the global English language media about her. Her youtube videos have over 35 million views in just under a week. 
The clip is a short one - seven minutes - but it is quite a roller coaster. You can click this link if the video above does not load. I found the link on facebook and I had a look. My emotions went from to pity to contempt to shock to disbelief & guilt to joy and wonder I guess.
It is rare that so many find so much joy from such simple things in life. I wish her all the best. I think that there are only 35 million or so viewers (at least) who are tracking her from the world over and rooting for her. 

11 April, 2009

Wind of change

Delhi has oppressive weather. It is hot from April till October, with the rainy months being very humid. The rainy season is short and the winter months are chilly. Personally, only the beginning and the end of winter, which are the months of November, February and March which are pleasant.
The past 12 months have been better. The rains lasted much longer in August and september. The winters were mild. There was also some rain in April this year (which never happens). I think the weather is changing. (Since it sucks so badly in Delhi, any change is for the better). The weather change is also depressing. I think these are our very local experiences of the global climate change.

I wonder if we will be able to mend our ways in time. The only piece of good news is this - more and more people are scared now about this than ever before.

I do not think that we can ever comprehend how rare and precious life is. Humans are even more so. Actually, I am not sure about that. Humans are definitely numero uno on this planet at this time. However, we are but the latest episode in a gigantic evolutionary soap opera which has been on air for the past 4 billion years on this planet. Can we assume that we are the end of the evolutionary chain? I do not think do. Other species too have been on the top of the ecological pyramid (I have seen Jurassic park), but humans would probably be the only species who are directly contributing to their own downfall. Anyway, humans could and should be just in a long line of species who made their presence felt for some time and then subsided.

Words can't express the irony well enough - 'the smartest species was dumb enough to skin its own goat'

On a lighter note, election fever is here in this country. Envigoman is of the opinion that we had predicted a lot of things two years ago which are close to correct. I need to read that post again.

05 April, 2009

Stretching coincidences

I am not a superstitious person. For me, a coincidence is a random event which, out of randomness, is linked to past or present events in such a way that causes further thought or excitement.
I am also somewhat lazy and need to fill up some of this time when I am not doing anything with thoughts. I take every excitable coincidence and analyse it to the limit. It is like connecting random dots to see if a picture emerges. The catch is not in how the dots are placed. The catch is in the number of dots. If you have enough dots, you can draw whatever you want.
What happened was this - I met someone (s1) who reminded me very strongly of someone else (se1). The funny thing is this - every time I have something new happening in my life, I experience an se1 event. Usually, it is a dream or an email. This time it was an entire person. It has been quite a while since se1, so I am not sure if I remember things completely/correctly, but still, it was quite close to what I remember.
So yes, stretching it is what describes it completely.
So, envigo.blogspot.com was visiting this weekend along with wife. I got to meet wife's sis envigo's brother. Overall, it was a great weekend except for one unpleasant incident.
The things we talked about included:
1. My life
2. His job
3. His future plans
4. The recession
5. Why I like living in India?
6. The case of two/three Indias in existence today and the overall apathy of everyone involved (us included)

The last topic was depressing, a bit more than I would have imagined. I will definitely have to write more about it.

Recently acquired the complete monty python series and have to go through it. I still have not managed to get the last four episodes of house season 4.

The first copies of my Nana's book got sold - envigo.blogspot.com being the first customer.