In the company of..

“Avasanam njanum unnikuttanum mathram aayi. Njan pinne avante koode maari oridathu irunnu.” (In the end, I was left alone with Unnikuttan. So, I went on with him to sit down at some corner.) My friend complained about her loneliness in a family trip to a relative’s place. The man of the house engaged her dad in a conversation, parallely as her mom was comforted by the woman of the house. The newly wed sister was given company by the husband. So my lonely whiny friend was left alone with Unikuttan, the cat of the house. The imagery of her description was utterly hilarious. But that doesn’t diminish the intensity of the emotion. Walking alone, and being left alone in a group are totally different things. The awkward fitting in is a miserable fate.

To be there always and to be stopped being cared for. To be replaced. I no longer call it people’s selfishness. Once I did. But now I know. People change. So do demands. Situations change. So do priorities. Life has always been a tiring hunt of the priorities. Ever changing and never lasting. For now I think from both the ends. To be ignored by someone and, to ignore someone. Both quite doesn’t seem easy. People still do both. Unfailingly. For that’s how life has taken people thru. Being there forever doesn’t count as much as being there when most wanted. I’s never the duration in time, but the depth in impact.

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Echoes of the silence!

Can silence echo? Does silence take a form of sound? I am wondering. How do mute people think? I mean, I think in English when I communicate in English, or Malayalam or Tamil, or whatever is relevant. How does a mute person think? Aren’t thoughts associated to words? And words to language? And language to syllables? And syllables to sound? Don’t we all need sound to think?! Obviously, no. I know. It’s not the knowledge. It’s the amazement. It’s the sheer marvel of life around you. I see a lot of mute people here. In bus. In the road. Mostly, coz there’s some school/institute for them nearby, which I haven’t come across with yet. So my awe is not totally out of place. I always see them communicate with each other in those crowded buses. They want a seat to sit down so that their hands are free to communicate thru their gesture. I used to feel bad. But then thinking about what might they do in the dark, I often let the thought just pass by and close my eyes in silence.

Ganesh chathurthy. Grand procession was on its way from the heart of the city, to the beach nearby for the auspicious ritual. Huge statues of Lord Ganesh would be thrown into the sea in reverence. The festive mood had stricken the city and the crowd hustled in the backdrop of deafening audio systems. Devotion was at its peak, with the blaring woofers. And I was to get a phone call exactly then, as I maneuvered myself out of the chaos, of noisy people and shrieking sound systems. I could do nothing but to put the caller on hold until I was out of the vicinity. On the way, I spotted two people. Probably, somebody whom I have already met but hard to recollect. The one thing I could connect, however, was that they were mute. They were talking. Calm and uninterrupted. The deluge of the sound systems hardly made any impact on their conversation. Life stood still. As the moment passed, I walked away, turning back at them once more. They were still talking. Unaware of the deafening sound. Unaware of the marvel. Unaware of the admiration.

A Saturday.

A plain usual Saturday. Like just any other day. But suddenly, it’s like one single day just changed lives for a couple of us. Being a regular working day, we should have been at college, celebrating our final ‘pookalam’ at college. Instead,three of my friends and me set off for an adventure. And so was it indeed. An amazing adventure, transcending our perspectives!

What after college was a very challenging question to each one of us. But now, we have something at a distance to point at. Inspired by innovations and ignited by the spirit of a group entrepreneurs, our paths are lit brighter than ever. Venturing into something different, thinking out of the box, and actually working for it, is no longer a distant dream. Seeing people of same wavelength, with similar aspirations and interests, the enthusiasm has touched a record high! We met people. Few of them like us. Few of them better than us. And most of them, nowhere near any comparison benchmark. We made contacts. We got exposed. And that’s uber exciting. To quote an incident that marked the gravity of the event in my brains. The speaker asked, “Have you heard of *so and so*?”. And my instant response, “Hey isn’t that *xyz*’s seminar topic in class?”. Letting the speaker complete his words, I got to know that I was in the same room as someone else who actually works hands-on on *so and so* in real life! And that was the master blow, about where I was then! We see people who talk about things others do. And we also see people who act upon things and make others talk about their acts!

Now the question is simpler. What do you want to be? Talking? Or acting? The dream is still distant. And the hurdles are still strong. But the passion is stronger. No matter the distance, no matter the obstacles. There’s always a chance we might make it. A faint little chance. A chance worth striving for. And that’s the passion we gained. On a plain simple Saturday.

Time-worthy-time!

My dad is a typical average earning Indian. Not too much but just enough, is his shopping slogan! Of most things I am intrigued about him, his where-does-each-penny-go is the one that draws me more! Everytime I ask for something, he gets it for me, but only after his tiring set of tests. First question, “Unakkithu venama ippo?” (Do you actually want this now?). “Enna vilai? Ivvalavu aavuma? Innam rendu kadayila kettu pakkalaame!” (Does it really cost so much? Why don’t we just ask around a few more shops!) That’s pretty much all you need! The question keeps echoing, ‘Do I need this now?’. And if for the nth time, if the answer is still yes, yes, I am getting it from him! He never forgets to add, “Nyayamana karyam naan orikkalum venda chollamtten.” ( I never say no to your fair demands!) And that, to this day, he sticks to his word! The only thing he rejected outright was pizza, which, however, he accepted in a later period of time! The value for money, the need for self evaluation before throwing your wallet across the counter and the judgment of product utility – they are all things he taught me, without his own knowledge. Last week I go home to see this thing, hanging on the wall in our hall! The old rickety clock looked odd there, but I loved the tick-tick and the ding-dong! So I casually asked dad how much did it cost him. He said 1.5k. Silence. I didn’t ask anything more. The more I contemplated on it, the more interesting and funny it seemed! My count-every-penny dad bought this clock! I kept staring at it. Dad somehow felt the scope of an explanation, and he did. “I know its expensive.But it was just a craze to me, to own a mechanical clock”. He started explaining how it needs to be wound only once a week, and how the ding-dong startles him in the middle of the night and on and on. I though of mentioning the mechanical wrist watch we gifted him, but later thought otherwise. It was a man’s passion. To own a piece of elegant excellence, from his earlier life and past. I just had to smile! 🙂 Only to irritate him, I said how nice would it be for me to realise my passion too, by holding a 40k phone, despite the ‘expense’! And right came the response. A more advanced 45k thing would be out on the market, the moment I buy the 40k product. Things keep changing, improving upon their own predecessors. But nothing is ever gonna improve and replace the mechanical ding-dong wall clock. Somethings acquire worth, just be their being, from the past, thru the present, into the future. Beyond the transience of times, beyond the worth of time itself!

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And it’s time, they say!

How do you know if it’s time yet for something? How do you define being too late or being too early for something? I guess it’s mostly when someone else points it out to you. For instance, I didn’t think it’s time yet to write again. I didn’t notice how long it’s been since I last updated my blog. For me, it always felt complete and unfinished, at the same time. The duality was confusing, and I was dazzled by it. And hence, until someone pointed it out (threatened to write, to be precise), I didn’t realise it’s time yet, to write.

Looking around, it’s this unawareness of time and space is what makes our life. What’s the right time to think of your career goals? When should one join the gym? When is the right time to trim your stubbles? When’s time you get a full-body massage? When’s it time you get up? When are you ready to face life as you must? When’s it appropriate to talk about sex to your kid? When’s it that you jump into the middle of an argument? When do you make the right move on your love? When is it time you start saving and investing? When’s it time you go see a doc? When’s it time you perhaps stop talking? When is time for you to finally sit down and relax?

It’s too many questions to answer in a single go. A person finds answers to all these with life itself. Rather put, life is all about making the right choice of time, more than any other choice in life. Making the right decision is too easy and most of us do it all the time. And that’s where the flaw lies. All right decisions at all wrong times! Time is the parameter that we are too ignorant to notice, when that’s the only we should actually account for!

“Tenth standard already! It’s time you put him in **** coaching centre!” “24 and not married?! How irresponsible parents! It’s high time..” “It’s 6.30 and you haven’t started yet??!” Time is a simple parameter, that completes the complex equation to life. Making time itself too complex, look at how we’d probably stare at an inequation to life by itself!

And it’s time, they say. For me to shut up and hit the bed.

Keep smiling!

Now that most conversations and relationships are maintained online, and there’s more ‘CAPSLOCK’ than actual yelling, more ttyl, more brb, more dnd, more cya, more whatever. Frankly, I don’t care. I don’t care if the soul in people’s communication is absent, I don’t care if emotions are dead, or if intimacy is lost or if distance builds between people! People are talking (rather blabbering) whatsoever! That’s more than glad! If you want warmth in your relationships, closeness with people of your life, and enliven the spirits, probably one should just go for it. Put your heart to it and do it. Online or offline. It’s not the means, it’s always the place where you make upto! Just wanted to say, to all those intellectual freaks, who lecture about how technology seeped into human relationships and fucked it up. How whiny is that! You don’t even know to guard your own mind and soul, and blame it all on the mind-less soul-less technology! It’s not gonna blame you back afterall!

But certainly, there’s one thing I greatly despise or find upsetting about the turn of events as such. These emoticons! Truly annoying! I’d rather say, misunderstood, misused and that’s such a mishap! Nobody ever fully gets what the other person tries to convey with a combination of colon, semi-colon, paranthesis and p’s and d’s and o’s! It’s been of such extensive use that it no longer means anytging. Well, use them anyway. I do too. They are the ice-breakers and once in a while, funny too. But I am sad how my smiles don’t pass by this. I put a : followed by a ) coz I actually really genuinely love to smile. And when I say keep smiling, I totally mean that. In the havoc of millions of colourful and disgusting smileys, I wish 🙂 could win the throne back and be the master of all smileys! Bring the pioneer back, I say! Back then, with the smiling face, was the only time we could actually communicate ’emoticons’ without confusion! A sad face, once in a while, was fine too!

Now thinking of it, ‘Keep smiling!’ was the motto of my school. The school that laid that basic blocks of my morale and principles. Wonder why it took me so long to assimilate the thought! Everytime, I saw that writing on the black board, I was wondering what’s up with the grown ups! Why would they even teach us to be escapists, run away from life, and ignore problems and just keep smiling? But now, at 21 years of age, I feel like Buddha! Like, the meaning just revealed to me. Like, all that I ever wanted was just buried so deep in my mind, next to a school girl’s confused thoughts! The answer reveals itself and it’s all in the smile. Putting it short, the whole deal here is that, when I tell you (you being my online conversation partner) ‘Keep smiling’, I most genuinely mean it. More than words.

Smile away!

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Athenna?

Athenna appidi? (Why’s that so?) That’s the most repeated response I have ever made in my life. To everything. To everybody. I have always demanded reasons and explanations. For I believed, and still believe that everything out there, happens for a reason and each by itself is a cause for something else. So what’s it there? Spirituality or rationalism? Whatever you see, I, for once, believe its a mix of both. A splendid proportion of two paths, leading to the ultimate. I am often avoided for my ‘crude’ attitude, often ’embraced’ for my ‘cool’ logic, and often pulled into a never ending debate on the duality of my thoughts!

A child asks you ‘why?’ and you answer. As long as its not about ‘taboo’ topics like …the list depends on your attitide. For every other question a child throws at you, it’s always a pleasure, playing around, mimicking accents, building stiries, and all the more, clarifying doubts and explaining the ‘why?s’.

Mammam saapidu. (Eat your food.)
Athenna? ( Why’s that?)
Illatta sakthi kedakkathu. ( You won’t be strong otherwise.)
Athenna?
Perisaava maattay. (You won’t grow up.)
Athenna?

What do you answer beyond this? What I can possibly think of is, hug the kid and laugh your mind out. Coz there ain’t a further explanation you can offer. Nothing would ever satisfy the child’s mind, for its so filled with curiosity, or as we call it, innocence. But as the child grows up, we’d want it to shed the cover of innocence, but not the edge of curiosity. It’s obvious of us to expect things to change. But at the same point, isn’t it slightly ridiculous too? Why is a kid’s questions welcome here but not a grown ups? The response I got in my usual pre-blog discussion, was that there’s no innocence in a grown up’s curiosity and that, its rather inquisitiveness!

I can’t draw my lines together here, and conclude. I guess I am more of a kid when it comes to curiosity and ‘athenna?’ attitude. But I also assume that I am enough grown up, to distinguish between being ‘inquisitive’ and being ‘curious’. So what’s the whole deal here? Should you rather shove up your questions and reasoning somewhere deep within, in the process of building up a social rapport? Or rather not.

The past week at home, my dad was continuously pinning me down with the same ‘athenna?’ questions. And for a long time, I was wondering what went wrong. And slowly, I forgot about it. But later, I caught him explaining it to my sister.It seems he was just throwing it back at me; the way I used to get on his nerves by my rationalism! That gave me a good laugh indeed. Coz, surprisingly his attitude pleased me all the more, than the annoyance he assumed!

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Dated!

Living thru dates, with dates, by dates, is a difficult task. And by dates, I am not talking about the fruit, dates. Nor am I talking about the dates people ‘go out’ on. Oh good lord! How many definitions do dates hold already! As if it is not enough, we have this-day, that-day, not-this-day and on and on, celebrating all kinda dates. And ofcourse those fancy dates. 01-01-01, 02-02-02…..12-12-12. Thank god its over by 2012! And as if none of these are enough, I have my fancy associations to dates! The day I first I joined this school. The day I met that person. The day I left this place. The day I last met some person. The day I first had some experience. The day with this and that and too many such stupid associations. Its funny how I remember so many birthdays that I don’t even want to make a wish on, too many anniversaries I don’t even care to be bothered about, too many days with no relevance to me as a person, still etched in my memory. Like, not even a brain damage could actually wipe them away. Every morning, getting up and actually waking into my senses, the first involuntary thing is to register the date in my memory, and then search for a matching item that corresponds to the date. And each day, has associations. Pleasant, unpleasant, moderate, and I-dont-give-a-fuck kinda dates. And as I pass by each such date, the one thing I so wish, atleast by next year this day, let me forget its stupid cooked relevance in my brain. I don’t want to remember so many pointless stuff. And today is one such day. A date I am trying to forget. Not coz its unpleasant. But coz its irrelevant in the life I currently live. An anniversary I choose to forget, but still reminded all the more, as I am the only one even thinking about it, even at this hour, as the day closes down.Ridiculous dates! Etched down the memory lane!

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Letting go!

Of all things in life, if I am to let go of something, I’d rather let go of my fears. Not all of them together. But may be, one by one. For a long period of my life, I thought I had feline-phobia. I was so afraid of cats. I still am. But then, I guess my greater fear was in acknowledging that I was afraid of cats than the fear itself. So I decide to let go of that one fear today. And I am proclaiming my fear. Yes! I am shit scared of cats though I always preferred calling it hatred or dislike or whatever. Today morning, I was beckoned by someone at the door. It was rather a ‘mya..mya’ that I heard and interpreted as ‘soumya’. But it was self explanatory as I reached the door and saw a cat stretching on my balcony. The annoyance of being fooled and stupidly mimicked – I was so frustrated. But that wasn’t enough for me to kick that creature out of my home. I was too scared to even go any close, that I had to call my grandma to shoo that thing away. “Thankachikkari konjuval. Nee oduvai.” (Your sisters pampers it, and you run away seeing it!) The ‘it’ being that 4 legged creature.

I was insecure about letting go of fears. As anyone else would be. But then, there happens these life changing moments, once in a while. To inspire you to let it go. To push you, a level ahead. I am glad it happens. Its like a sudden revelation that tells me it’s not worth hiding under the covers. That, life just happens once, as we know it, and its never too late to start over right now. But may be, the next moment could turn to be too late. So here I am, letting go of it. One by one. By confronting people and things and all that my fears attribute to.

One of the very first times, today, I had another two wheeler bumping onto mine. I was parked by the roadside and waiting to make a U-turn, when a lady casually brushes against my vehicle and parks and walks away. As she was gonna walk away, I called out for her and demanded an explanation. There was no huge damage, but an apology would have been still welcome, as it was evidently her carelessness. But to my surprise, she yelled and freaked out, as though I came hit her from behind. For a moment, I thought I was her. Too scared to confront. Too scared to accept one’s own mistakes. I could see more of fear than accusation in her. I was her. Most of my life. But the rest of my life, I knew how not to be her. And how much I want to be not her. So the rest of my life, that’s what I would like to do. To let go of fears. And everything else that chains down the flowing spirit in me.

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Blog leave

As I am suffering from God-knows-what-pain and can’t really type, I’d be grateful if you could grant me one day’s blog leave…
Seriously who am I kidding! Once again running out of topics to write, I don’t know what excuse to find now. Let me just randomly glance thru some random stuff around me.

# Seeing my little sister pack her school bag every night is one of the most painful things these days. I so much miss going to school, with all those geometry box stuff, last min English essays, scribbled math problems and all those tiny things that I didn’t even care about, when I was actually doing all of them. I wanna join some back to school programme!!

# My annoyance and irritation knows no limit. I don’t even think about who am I talking to, until I actually yell and scream at them, only to regret later. I am not able to have it under control.

# Every morning starts with me getting all geared up with some text book, convincing myself that something’s gonna happen today atleast. But as ever, the night just comes back again, as I retrospect and evaluate the academic futility of the day.

# Some days are just so random. I am not even sure what am I looking forward for. Its almost like there’s no reason at all, to start over with another day. But I am just doing it anyway.

# Lately, got back with some friends, over messaging, thru phone and in person. Guess it does good to you, once in a while, reminding what you were and what you are no more. But this time, it was more pleasant than disturbing.

# Off and on with some serious psycho issue. I am acting totally weird, shuttling between persona, writing stupid stuff like this, making stupid self evaluations and finally brooding on them.

This typing with left hand is **** tiring and annoying. Off.

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