Thursday, August 31, 2006


It is wisely said that one should stay within one's limits. One's limits are an imaginary threshold which separates what one can do and one ought not. This imaginary boundary is generally perceived and modified with period of time.

Tough thing about this boundary is that it keeps fluctuating. At times, the area of 'what one can do' is bigger than the area of 'what one ought not to do', and the very next day, what was once an acceptable thing is now no longer acceptable.

The latter offset my balance, and I came crashing down to Apni Aukaad.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

'What am I doing in Life?'

Pretty good academic record all through education.
Working for very popular company.
Good rise in career and pay.
Onsite opportunity.
Visited most of US.

Yet, a feeling of emptiness.
The haunting question : "What am I doing in Life?"
The answer always is : "I don't know."

A wasted day

Very less work in office. Passed time till 5 PM by browsing internet, calling up some old pals and chatting with others who were equally free. Went to a friend's place for some nice evening snacks. Came back home and watched junk on so-called idiot box. Blogged this, and hit the sack.

What a wasted day...

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Lord Ganesh and the Moon... goes the myth, are not best of friends. It just so happened that Moon, being as always oh-what-a-beauty, laughed at Lord Ganesh upon seeing an Elephant's trunk on a human form. Offended by this gesture, Lord Ganesh was humiliated and felt a tinge of inferiority complex for not being as jaw-dropping and breath-taking as Moon. A strong resolve was made right then by Lord Ganesh. A ground breaking law was created. "Nobody should see Moon's face on Ganesh Chaturthi, and if anyone does, they shall suffer..." One could almost hear the pound of the gavel, and the ensuing words "Case dismissed."

Fast forward to the current era. Me, being a humble devotee of Lord Ganesh, whom I have always thought of in highest regards, and a very good friend of Moon (as described in my 100 steps blog), to whom all my day's problems are poured upon and a very close confidant, I cannot take sides. Really. I need both of them. Equally!

However, nor do I want to suffer! And so, I do not want to see Moon on Ganesh Chaturthi, thereby me tending to be the 'law"-abiding citizen! Call it superstition, call it myth, call it foolishness, but I do not want to go against Lord Ganesh on His day.

But then, it so happens that on all Ganesh Chaturthis, the sky is always crystal clear. When I make my way towards the temple just when the dusk is setting, as always, I look at the sky and admire the natural beauty of sky-blue-mixed-with-orange hue and the pattern of the clouds, and it always just so happens that Moon is there, smiling at me. I smile back. Then it hits me that this is not the day to be smiling at Moon! But, by then, its too late! Alas, the year, for the next 365 days, is destined to be - I wouldnt say "full of suffering", but - "difficult". This event has occurred every year for as long as I can remember.

But did not occur in 2006!

Sunday, August 27, 2006


One of the most profound movie scenes I have ever seen is the one in Dil Chahtha Hai when Aamir Khan and Preity Zinta come running down the stairs to catch a subway train, and Aamir gets in the train but by the time Preity approaches, the door of the train closes and the train starts off agonisingly, leaving her alone in the station.

A magnified observation of this scene in Life's broader terms speaks of a number of things:
- Of the cliche : So near, yet so far.

- Of the cliche : There's many a slip between the cup and the lip.
- Of the effort of running towards the train, going in vain.
- Of the No-it-cant-be-happening look on your face.
- Of the desperate attempt to open the door which just doesnt budge.
- Of the futile effort of running beside the train hoping it would stop and doors would open.
- Of the painful thought of opportunity slipping away from fingers.
- Of the embarassment of having not been on time.
- Of people inside the train staring at you helplessly.
- Of some others smilingly as if you were Scapegoat-of-the-Day.
- Of the feeling of being drenched in a bucketful of ice cold water of Failure.
- Of the feeling that the Almighty is rolling on floor with laughter, pointing at you.
- Of what a fool you have made of yourself.
- Of the despondency that hits you when you realise that actually you lost against Time.
- Of the emptiness one feels when the train goes out of sight.

Life has a lousy sense of timing.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

At the end of the day...

There is always a fun in doing things entirely for someone else.
It is even more fun when its meant to be a surprise!
The moment you get up, you think about things charted out, hoping everything falls in place, and you feel a glow within you.
Every other pressing thing is pushed to the back of mind.
It shall definitely be worth it in one's life to do things entirely for some one else.
It will make you feel as one belonging to the Elite Club of Nature's Noblest!
You are bursting out with curiosity to see how happy it will make the other person at the end of the day.

But I guess I just suck at it.

At the end of the day, all it amounted to was just a sad shake of head.

Sunday, August 20, 2006


Depression is a very tough thing to fight. It comes over all of a sudden. One minute you are happy and care free. The other, you are lying down, drained out, with hands on head and feeling the burden of the world. Not much one can do about it. Arises, of course, out of false expectations. But expectations are a part of life. And with it comes despondency.

The feeling of no longer being needed and the feeling of having lost the importance that one cherished, is one such source which causes a state of depression. There is a moment in everyone's life that he or she is no longer needed. This has been depicted in many forms of audio-visual treats and real-life scenarios.
  • Father of the Bride, in which the father hates to let go of his daughter as he refuses to believe that she is old enough to get married and move on in life.
  • The episode of Everybody loves Raymond in which Debra feels the loss of her kids' love to her when they get attached to the baby-sitter.
  • The feeling that a mother gets when her daughter-in-law replaces her role of taking care of her son.
  • Parents who give their heart and soul for their kids but when the same kid grows up, the parents are made to feel that they are no longer needed.
  • The crowd no longer needs a player who doesnt perform upto his expectations.

Oranges have a thick outer layer. It is peeled off to reveal pouches filled with yummy detoxifying juice placed in a circular ball-like shape. If one prefers to eat oranges, one can eat the pouches as a whole, but if one wishes to make an orange juice, one has to squeeze the pouches. Once the juice is squeezed out of the pouches, they are thrown to the trash. At the end of the day, thats all what the pouch remains.

Used and squeezed and drained out and in trash.

Before Sunrise

When something happens, I guess every blogger goes through the thought that 'Hey I have written about this!' and wishes that same something had occurred previously so that he could have noted it in his blog. A similar thing happened to me today when I saw Before Sunrise. The movie seems like a tangential version of my previous blog Date? although I confess it is not all the same. Key factors in the movie never ever occurred! Perhaps one can say a figment of the movie is my blog.

Nevertheless, it strengthens my argument, if argument is indeed the word, that with strangers, one opens out and one finds one's true self!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

100 steps

My mom's father is an admirable man. One whom you can say 'has lived his life'. Even at the age of 70 odd, he keeps himself completely occupied with enterprises which a person half his age would shrink from taking on. Amongst others, one of his admirable qualities is the 'After Dinner Walk.'

As a kid, whenever I used to visit the grands' place, the ADW was one of the look-fwd-to activities of the day. After a nice and sumptuous dinner of granny's specialty, we cousins used to run out of the house, and stride up and down the street multiple times, keeping pace with the granddad. While the grand old man was busy occupied in his own thoughts, we kids used to babble nineteen to the dozen and cause enough ruckus in the street for heads to pop out from windows and curse the noise-makers!

Over the next few years of childhood (when not staying with grands), I lost this habit. Gradually my mom instilled in me the discipline of 'atleast 100 steps after dinner' for proper digestion. This caught onto me, and then began another of my odyssies till date!

The favorite place in my house is the terrace. So, what better place to walk after dinner than the terrace! I go round and round, definitely more than 100 steps), soliloqui-ing about topics currently on my mind, admiring the Orion and other constellations. Pacing up and down brings with it such clarity of thought that I used to go to the terrace with a heavy heart, soul filled with sadness of the day, and come down back to the house, a changed man, with a much lighter heart, owing to the break down of the problems into smaller chunks of issues and self-resolved temporary solutions and consolations! At times, the monologues were amazing and I wish I had a recorder to track how fascinating one can think when one is walking. But alas, the sparkling thoughts remain with me, undiscovered, till it withers away.

Digression. There are certain things that fascinate me; things that make me gape in awe. And in almost all of my ADWs on the terrace, I used to see two such things every night. The moon is one.

Many great things have been written by great poets about Moon. It is one of the most fascinating things I have ever seen in my life! The shining white ball on a Full moon's day is a view to cherish. It is something for which we have to thank God for having given us eyes! Often, I keep staring at it for hours together and never get bored!

The second is Wright brother's invention. As most planes have to pass over our home before landing on or after taking off from the Bangalore Airport runway, there are almost 10-15 flights exercising this activity between 9.30 pm and 10 pm. Since I hadnt sat in any airplane for as long as I can remember, it remained a dream for me to sit in one of them and experience the flight. Its different now, 2 years later, when I have flown enough in airplanes to have got bored of it. But, back then, whenever I saw an airplane during my ADW, I used to stare and long for my journey in what I call 'an engineering marvel.' [This dream finally came true on March 6th 2005 when I flew from Bangalore to Chennai, en route to Boston via London. It confirmed my belief. It is indeed an engineering marvel!] Ironically, it was when I was having this ADW when I heard about the planes crashing WTC in USA.

Coming back to the topic, now, in my US apt, all I have been doing after dinner, since 1.5 yrs, is walk from one end of the room till the other end, swinging a cricket bat to keep me occupied, till I get claustrophobic. Winter wont allow you to go out of the house. There is no terrace. I do not prefer to go walking on the roads, at night, all by myself. But, last night, I did walk out on the road for the first time in US. After a heavy dinner, with the cell's earphone plugged, I roamed around the apartment complex, chatting with a friend of mine, who has recently come to US.

It felt great to walk...
It felt great to see those multitude of planes again...
It felt great to see the beautiful Moon and the constellations again...

It is the small things in Life that gives immense pleasure....

A lie

Every one of us have two faces. One is the 'good' face and another is the 'Not-so-good' face. All of us in our day to day life try to have the 'good' face by default, but there are occasions when, all of a sudden, Mr. 'Not-so-good' comes upon by itself and makes you do acts worthy of shamefulness.

Yesterday, I lied to a friend of mine. I rarely lie. I hate lies. I hate people who lie. Circumstances make you lie. If I get to know the circumstances, I might not hate the person. Its strange what circumstances can do to a man. Its strange how it can change a man. But, then again, I guess thats Life.

But then, I am not a good liar. I choke when I lie. My demeanour changes considerably. I will not be able to make eye-contact. Its more like God violently shaking me. No, you dont need a lie-detector to see through me. Yet, I lied. And during all such rare occasions when I lie, I feel like a creep and remorse almost makes jump from a building.

I went to the rest room. I looked at myself in the mirror. Whenever I need to contemplate, I stand before a mirror. Feels like some third party looking at me and shaking head in disgust. Call it ego, call it swabhimana, a part of me was fighting me to stick with the lie. Swabhimana prefers a jump from a building rather than surrender to crime committed. But majority of me said "Come clean."

One of life's biggest reliefs is confession. A very tough thing to do, for a person who has ego. To accept defeat. To bow down and feel naked and shameful. Yet, its a cleansing act. Like taking bath and getting rid of dirt.

There can be only one feeling at the end of a nice, warm bath.


Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Things going wrong...

Mathadhaana is one of the greatest Kannada movies I have seen. There are a number of significant characters in the movie. Audience ends up wishing well for all of them, instead of just the 'Hero' and 'Hero-ine'. And yet, as is the world, that cannot happen. Although, the not-so-significant romance does indeed bloom in the end, the 'clinch', so to speak, lies in the movie's interpretation of things going wrong.

Chess is one of my favourite games. 'Favourite' and 'Good at it' are two sides of the coin for me! And yet, I like it a lot. Whenever I play, I try hard not to make the wrong moves. I keep track of the opposition's pawns and make sure none of my pawns get devoured. It is a very strategic game, and hey, I like the word 'strategy' too!

It was on one such occasion, way back in mid 1990s, when I was playing this wonderful game with one of my best friends, who happens to be very good at it, that I lost, in spite of me putting in all my concentrated powers, and not making a single wrong move. At the end of the match, I frankly asked him which of my moves was wrong. He smiled at me and agreed that I had not done a single wrong move. And yet, there lies the charm of chess, he explained, if the opposition's moves are better than your moves, you still end up losing. You do not have to make mistakes to lose.

For many characters in the aforementioned movie, this statement holds good. As a matter of fact, this wisdom, I reflected over the next few years, is applicable even for the general day-to-day life. One does not necessarily make mistakes and end up in an uncomfortable situation. One is forced by the powers-that-be and the roll-of-dice to end up pushed against the limits of the cul-de-sac and there is just nowhere-to-go, but suffer and hope fervently :

"This, too, will pass."

Monday, August 14, 2006

One of those crossroads...

I guess every man comes at that juncture of life when suddenly you find yourself wondering if a person you thought you knew well enough is someone whom you really didnt know at all...

And all you can do is, just shake your head slowly, wish the person good luck silently in your mind, and hope the person shall be happy in Life. And then you move on....

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Orkut and ......... Globalisation

Orkut was introduced to me by the same friend of whom I spoke of in my previous blog's first few lines. I initially refused to register myself as I am not so keen on creating user ids and pwds for every tom-dick-and-harry websites. The request lay in my inbox for months together till I came to US. Internet being the heart and soul of everyone in US, and Orkut being more of a curiosity to me than anything else, I registered myself.

For days together, she was my only friend in the 'Friends' list and I gradually learnt about the scraps, communities, network of friends and other orkuttisms. And then started the avalanche! Day in and day out, I started finding long-lost friends, long-lost touch cousins, juniors, seniors, colleagues of previous projects, people who had left the company and a host of others. Multitude of friends started adding me and vice versa. People's profiles looked interesting and amusing. 'Orkutting' became the 'In' thing and a major time pass!

It was not just the finding-of-lost-friends that was fascinating. The knowledge of the location of each friend almost always brought on an element of surprise that varied from oh-that-was-expected to what-the-#&*%!! From Seoul to San Francisco, from Sydney to Singapore, from Toronto to Tokyo, from Paris to Pune, from Dubai to Detroit, from Montreal to Mangalore, from Boston to Bangalore, from Texas to UK, I feel as if I know people all over the world!

And to think, at one point of time, I had sat with each one of them under the same roof, and had no inkling whatsoever where each will land up! Apart from Africa and South America, the network of friends has grown to almost all parts of the world, and the feeling is somehow one that of pride. It somehow feels nice to know that, India being the way it was, invaded and colonialised a century ago, we have made our presence felt all over the globe.

And thanks to Orkut, World looks like just one big happy family!

Sunday, August 06, 2006


A friend of mine told me that she checks my blogs everyday, to see if I have written anything new. I quite frankly asked her whats in my blog to look forward to, for if I were a layman browsing through the so-called Kaleidoscope weblog, I would give it a once-over and deduce that its mainly negative. She replied saying 'Its not negative. Its pensive.' I caught onto that word pensive!

The reason why I started blogs is plainly because I fall in that category of people who write diaries. Have been writing diaries since almost 10 yrs now. There were occasions, when something like a big rock falls over my head and I stop writing altogether, because the despondency is too much to log entries. Almost like no words to describe.

Something like this happened in April of 2005 and I stopped writing altogether. It was about the time when web-logs were becoming popular gradually. Finally, after pushing myself to register and see how it goes, I started off with Kaliedoscope.

Unlike a diary, where everything and anything can be written, the bare facts cannot be written in my web-log. For, although this was true as an outlet of emotions, it was also there for everyone to see. Hence, the blogs should be in such a way as to track what I was going through and at the same time not reveal all. This led to hugely complicated metaphors, of Da Vinci style encryption, of a thought which comes to the mind which clearly relates to what I feel towards the world's treatment towards me, and in general, the climate of the happenings scribed in a way so as to say 'Its not always what it seems.'

Coming back to the pensive topic, well, I guess I fall into the category of people who feel like writing when they are feeling down. There are some blogs which are outright hilarious, and a treat to read. Not so mine, and I have no regrets! I would gladly settle down for a sentence for a day, if it comes to that, like that Carrie character in Sex and the city.

There are occasions when one feels offset by the current scenario that one is facing. People with determined goals often do not find themselves in quandaries as these. With aim in life, and goals set aside, few things that come in between will be easily brushed aside. Its people without this aim in life, who start asking "Whats the purpose of my life?" and start feeling the going getting tough.

Compare this to half a century ago to similar aged people, and the answer would be 'Need to live'. With world war and fight against colonialism raging through every nook and corner, the main purpose of life is to just plainly live. Compare it to the era of Great Depression, purpose of life was to just get a job. A very touchy movie being Cinderella Man. Makes your heart cry out. And come back to the era of fat paychecks and onsite assignments and and jobs overseas and enough-food-to-throw, with nothing practically to worry about, and yet, pensiveness does not stop. Watch Swades!

But then again, comparisons are bad things. One should not compare the current era to a century back. It sort of serves no purpose. At remote areas of this world, there are still such people.

Money and food and richness of life always does not necessarily keep the worries at bay. One needs the good company of like-minded people to share, to enjoy, to bask in the glory of sunlight. One of the amazing movies that capture this is in the legend Dr Raj Kumar's Doorada Betta (1973) in its famour song 'Preethine Aa Dyavru' where the catchline is 'Hasivinallu habbane (celebration even in hunger)'.

And it is when this good company starts gradually making its absence felt that pensiveness starts.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006


A false accusation. A revolting and outrageous statement. One which makes the bile reach its zenith. Urge to reach out, grab the person's collar and give a heartfelt bash. Derogatory curses on the tip of the tongue. Yet, I lay silent.

The accuser being the source of accusation. Accuser himself commiting acts worthy of accusation but remaining unaccused. The mocking satisfaction on accuser's face for accusing. Selective amnesia of one's own similar acts. Yet, I lay silent.

The past. The joyfulness shared. The strength of the friendship. The admiration for one another. The mutual necessity. The constant gossip. The sacrifices. The trust. The 'Always-there' security. Hence, I lay silent.

The future. The ensuing disparity. The mar on the friendship chart. The unending fights. Insolvable status quo. The unwanted regelation. The resultant cul-de-sac. The hatredness. The lack of respect. After all, how long will it last? Hence, I lay silent.