Sunday, December 28, 2008

ironies in the life of a bespectacled man...

of all people wearing specs i believe. apolgies for the sexist 'bespectacled man' but then it is about me, although through me, i am trying to tell the stories of everyone with four eyes...(thats what friends in school used to call me)
anyways, back to the topic. i wear specs, have a high power, and cylindrical, which basically means me grazing on a tonne of carrots is not gonna make any difference, its gonna stay, almost constant, throughout my life. its almost an extended part of my body now...but unlike my body parts, i can change the look of it from time to time. and i did just that today. got myself a new pair of eyes. 
took a friend along, who helped me choose the frame...well chose it for me, because....
irony no 1 - to try out new frames, u have to take of ur existing specs, and judeg urself with the new frame...but ur not wearing ur u can't see that well...and so how do u choose ur new specs!!! but then we, the bespectacled four eye geeks...we are good at the art of estimation...
but even estimation doesn't help when u go for haircuts...mine are already short, how much can u estimate. so the basic two instructions a slope. good enuf, works most of the time, i come out looking the same almost everytime, not many times have had accidents which make people laugh. but irony no 2 happens at the barbers shop...mostly after the barber (sounds weird calling him/her that, but there is no other better word) has done the damage, he and once she, brings out this huge rectangular mirror, and puts it behind ur head, at a 30 deg angle, and then they expect ur weakend eyesight to go from ur eyes to the mirror in front and reflect back to the 30 deg mirror...thats almost 2 feet...u think if i could see that much, i wouldn't be wearing specs...but alas that never strikes. they still hold the mirror, and look at u, expecting a compliment even...after many years of going through the amusing torture...i just nod along, and he holds it on the other side again, 30% from the perpendicular. (which now that i think of it is totally absurd, which dumb ass barber will cut keep ur hair long on one side and short on another, well maybe its their small 'bored with cutting hair all day long, lets play a prank, he is anyways blind without the specs, will even show him with the 30 deg mirror' thing. its like a double joke on poor me).  
the third irony is well something which happens with me every third day, its so basic, and frustrates the most. loosing ur do u search for ur specs without wearing ur specs!!! its amusing...and slowly very frustrating...i actually have many times gone feeling the entire place like a blind man.  at that point u know the value of another bespectacled roomie...who competely understood the pain and would come running to help u out, wherever he was...ah i miss shinde.
i am sure there are more ironies...more amusements like the realisations when ur specs get wet in the rains...its like looking out of a window during rains...just that the window is about half an inch from ur eyes...and every drop is like a lense in itself. or the major decision u have to take when driving in i take off my specs and drive by estimation (not very safe) or do it keep them on and still drive by estimation....kua and khai kinds!!!
what ever, i am not going for the laser surgery thingy...even if my corneas are thick enuf.
take care.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

TRICK-N-TREAT: A researcher asks dogs to perform a trick for a reward. But when one dog gets no reward, and then sees another get a sausage for doing the same trick, it refuses to perform the trick again

a times of india article, something which every dog owner already owners. dogs have the same feelings we do...all animals do. my jeanie, actually waits for jimmy to have his fill of food, and once he has turned away, she polishes the vessel away. we never have to wash it, its so clean. but the point is, she waits patiently sitting right next to jimmy. doesn't fight, but sits there, staring at jimmy and his food. jimmy, after some time, even if he hasn't had his fill, will turn away just out of shame. its happened to us as well right. 
and thats just an example.
just adding some much needed color to the blog...
take care. 

dil se and a dog

so the place i go to drink coffee every morning or afternoon (depends on when i am going to work), well the house next to this coffee place...has two dogs. one a huge and beautiful great dane. pic is in my other blog. huge as in huge...u should see it jump. anyways, its not about him, but more about the other one...who, i don't why, is always kept out of the house. i know dog lovers, and i think this family is one, so don't know why he is kept outside. looks like it has a breed, and is not very dirty. but it still is always kept out of the boundaries of the house. 
so what does he do...well sits all day at the main gate which is one of those scooter can only pass gates, shoulder height, grilled. he sits there all day long, sometime desperately, hopeingly pawing the gate, wanting to go inside. u can see in its eyes, there is this dedication to his cause, to the cause of getting in. nothing else matters to him. its beautiful. and its not like its one day...its every day. 
dil se...well manisha koirala has this one single objective...and she ignores the strongest of feelings, feeling of love, and follows that objective. 
so my point is...there are two kinds of people, one who are like the dog and manisha koirala. they are focussed on that one thing, getting freedom for their country, being with the girl they love, waiting for her...pursuing an idea maybe...they dedicate their life to that one thing. not easy...there are always those strings those relationships which are attached to you, which are so thin and easy to break, that u fear even to stretch them a bit. 
i wonder what kind of life is that...missing out on everything else. and what would happen if at if you come to the end of the road or you are out of time, and haven't reached ur destination. what kind of feeling would be, when on ur deathbed, after a life of waiting for someone, you are still dying alone. would there be a regret of loosing out on life...of an unsuccessful, hardly lived life? would you question 'was it worth it?'
and then there are those who just live life...objective is a good life...which frankly, ask me, is no objective. where everyday is just another day, a struggle, small achievements, never ending pains, and peace, which doens't last till the next moment.
a life where we are not better then animals, where objective is nothing but making more progeny, and then dying. ofcourse there is the usual a better life, make a lot of money etc etc...but at the very basic level, its just that. living to make more like u. 
but then, its a comfortable life. atleast you have those small joys, and you have some people to share those joys with. its a usual life, at the end of the road, u atleast have reached someplace. u atleast have something to show for. u don't have the disappointment of a wasted life, u don't question you life. 
so thats what it comes down to, is it all or nothing or are you satisfied with something.
and which life do you wanna  live??? 

Saturday, December 06, 2008

similar...lives and people!!!

a long time back when i told my parents about this girl and our mom went 'history repeats itself' and i was surprised. slowly came to know about their lives, and found out that it was very similar to what i am going through. not the actual happenings...but yea to a level more then the usual. the circumstances, the behaviors and the outcomes were all very similar. 
today a friend is living through the same things that i did, the same circumstances, and in this case even the particulars are same. hopefully the outcomes will be different. 
he is making the same mistakes i am, and even after knowing the price i had to pay for my mistakes, still keeps on repeating them. guess even if u know about other peoples experiences,  you have to go through them urself to learn from it. they do not make sense till you do.

so two thoughts out of this. one, if all pieces in the two jigsaw are the same, they make the same picture. all ingredients are same, and they simmer for the same time, ofcourse the outcomes gonna taste the same. but a smallest of change can take you in a totally different direction in the long run. watch out for those. and surely if you see them, make sure u know whether to go down those paths.

other thing, well see if you can view this. we are divided into categories, so bengali, hindu, indian are all categories. each category has its own qualities. Till now, these categories did not interbreed, too much atleast. so those qualities became even more u know a bengali is a thinker and so. 
well now that interbreeding is quite common, it will be more difficult to categorize, at least in the traditional categories. now on every individual will be a collection of qualities, but there won't be any collection of individuals, there will be more diversity. imagine a world without any categories, without any tags like hindu, or metrosexual, at least tags based on non-physical characteristics. that would be nice. 
maybe we will come out with new categories, we already have 'IT crowd' as one. although not sure what the exact definition is...i guess there is no perfect definition for any category, there are vague definitions, which define 80% of the qualities, qualiteis which are common, and thats where my problem with tags and categories, they miss out on the 20% of uniqueness.
let the 20% define known by that 20% which makes you unique.
take care

terror marketing

i keep on coming back to the power of marketing...which seems to be the all pervasive driving force behind everything today. right from innovation to terror, everyone wants to be recognized, to be marketed.
and the mumbai blasts stamped that fact. the coverage given was immense, the terrorists caught on tape must have become poster boys for the like minded. their stamina, their motivation talked about, and this would become an inspiration for others.  those videos would be used for ever to motivate those vulnerable, to value death and killing more then life itself. 
so the question is would a blanket freeze over showcasing such videos, photographs help. would it lessen the motivation, would it make those ready to kill and die in the process for a cause which they do not really understand well, but are convinced is their own, question why?, question, what will i get out of it?
in a discussion with someone who has thoughts so of his own, over the motivation for killing, it was pointed out that its not really motivation coming out of a the cause, but more out of the fact that they will be regarded as heroes, as martyrs for a cause. the base why you even think of doing something like this is the absence of the basics in life, absence of food, education, those things which make life worht living, but the thing which second or third level motication, which actually makes you cross that line, which makes u believe that you are getting something in return is the fame which comes along with it. if thats true then, they would want to be known far and wide, and video's and photographs, and lengthy accounts of how they did it, goes a long way. so yes, a blanket ban on showing this to the general public would help. become fame (even through infamy) is, i believe a bigger motivation then money itself, then any religious cause, no one does anything especially if not serving one of your basic needs, if they know it won't be recognized.  its human nature.
and of course, the simple question of returns, ROI, will come into picture. if these things are not publicized the way they are, and as widely, imagine the number of attacks required for the same amount of terror. today after mumbai, the entire country is in fear, but if people in other cities won't have seen the images, it would be difficult to terrorize everyone with one attack. the ROI of that one attack will be very less, more sacrifices would be needed for the same results. and sorry for being cold, but thats how people who make decision would be thinking of it. cold and calculative.
that said, its only because of people watching that 60 hour marathon live coverage, of being glued to their TV sets, and the unending discussions that followed, that the reaction of the nation has been so strong. people are recognizing that the elected are not doing a very good job,  recognizing the fact that we, the general public, are being used like those young kids, who killed and died, for a personal agenda of some.  come to think of it we are not very different. 
all said, the power of media, and frankly, the power of marketing is immense, especially today. and with the immaturity of the majority audience, this power can, very easily be misused. the thoughts which are conveyed, the analysis which is given can change our thinking, because, frankly, very few of us think on our own, we just repeat or adhere to someone else's philosophy. easy to follow then to think on you own, let alone lead or walk alone.
so should media be analyzing at all. isn't the media's job to tell the facts, and if analyzing, have a differentiation between the facts, and their analysis, their comments. i believe news at least, the half an hour devoted every hour, should be devoted only to stating the facts. the analysis, should be preceded by a warning "this is our analysis, these are our thoughts, understand them, don't follow them blindly'"
as for the videos shown, its the same, videos showing actual events are fine, but videos of terrorists or those elected, should not be served to the public as fact. that is just making media a medium for propaganda. if it has to, they should be asked to buy airtime, and preceded by a warning..."this is propaganda, this is what this person or this organization has to say, this is not we are saying"
and i call them 'the elected' because, they are elected by us. they are our representatives. i believe this, those who rule, come out of those being ruled, they are one of us. the questions is are you electing the best of you, or the worst of you.

take care. hope you survive the new reality.