April 1, 2015

Clash of differences

Very often I find that most of the lessons learnt in school were so irrelevant and so not-making-any-impression on kids sort that it bemuses me what would happen to the people who think they were running the show once they are put out of work. The thought of doing the same at workplace also sometimes feels motivating to me but I think that revenge angle of things is best avoided. Revenge against what you ask? The revenge is for the stark difference in what one is supposed to be doing and what fraction of it they end up doing, even if it was because they were incompetent in the first place or just letting things be shying away from the responsibility.

The lesson I would like to bash today is that of "unity in diversity". This is perhaps the most ironic and hypocritical essay each one of us would've written as part of the school syllabus. We talk about unity but are so bent upon:

  • distinguishing ourselves from the other and
  • classifying achievements based on the group one belongs to and worse,
  • encouraging others, directly or indirectly, to do the same. 
I was disgusted at college year after year to see the lengths people could go to distinguish themselves and their groups/clans. And each time I hid that disgust by repeating the dialog from Chak De! "mujhe na states ke naam dikhayi dete hain na sunayi dete hain, sirf ek mulk ka naam sunayi deta hain.. India".
  • The first year was all about North Indian South Indian divide. 
  • The second year about divisions within the AP community based on cities they came from: Hyderabad, Vizag, and I can't remember the rest. 
  • In the third year, I was extremely fortunate to stay away from all these idiots and work in the kind of environment I did my schooling in: different people from different departments and different backgrounds and talking purely about work rather than dissecting into why one behaved the way they did. I'm not saying its wrong, because its definitely scientific to think about it that way except that at that time it just felt a bit separatist than unifying. Well anyway nobody spoke about it back then so that's that. 
  • The fourth year was about brahmins, non-brahmins, etc. The final year was about khammas, chaudharys, etc. It was perhaps the worst environment I could have imagined. 
But things don't end with college they just begin there. People from Bangalore complain about Hyderabad. People from Maharashtra who are actually clueless about cities start complaining about the lack of good food in Hyderabad. Well show me a city that is perfect or at least aims towards perfection. Every city would have its problems and before pointing a finger why don't you just think its India first before anything else. 

As usual, I try to keep myself out of these conversations as much as I can because its just feels so regressive. Also I'm sure that someday when a time comes for these people to choose between a person of their group and a person from another group, they would go for the former irrespective of any need. 

So more than the riots, the basic everyday conflicts are disuniting and we can only become a stronger country if we show unity in these small discussions and problems and look outward rather than inward. Let's think about how we are going to contribute to the colonization of Mars now that we know how many problems humans can create for themselves because of these divisions.  

Once again its the small things that need to be set right and automatically things would fall into place. 

January 18, 2015

The joy of reading

I maintained for as many as five years that if I were given a book split into hundred blog posts across the web I would find them and read them all but if you give me the book I won't even be able to turn a page. Well happy new year for me because finally I've overcome that mental obstacle and am able to start reading a book with the same joy I once had.

Part of the reason for my preference towards the blogosphere and the internet in general is the realization of how much I did not know and would like to know. Of course, this continues even today but I might have a better solution this time around. The advantage of reading from a computer screen or a mobile device is that one could immediately look up the unknown, know the full background, and then get back to the actual reading material.

Well with the book, you could write down all the stuff you don't know at one place but its unlikely that you would remember the context in which you came across those terms. And even if you do have a well maintained list you would end on the internet and not at a library.

Having read quite a few articles on the net about curbing that desire to use a device for looking up something you come across in a book (linking the article here would defeat the purpose of this post!) I've come to the conclusion that library (private or public) is the best way to read something. You come across unknown terms, go find the relevant book and come back. Ah been ages since a library.

The problem with not reading books cannot be more crystal clear, I always end up trying to complete a post and its almost impossible now to write with a streak or a flow precisely because of running out of ideas to express ideas :)

Cheers for reading then!

December 31, 2014

Culmination of ways

There have been such genuinely happy moments for our gang that it is difficult to identify where exactly the fault lay for the disintegration which my 19-year old self had already predicted. While some say it was because of giving too much attention to the disintegrating elements some think it was because there was never too much bonding in the first place.

I've had a fun time analyzing and discussing this with many people and repeatedly trying to question if there was some wrong-doing from my side or if I could pinpoint the main reasons. 

So here are the problems I discovered which had caused the inevitable drift--after prolonged thinking and rhetoric discussions:

The real problem was with people not being transparent with each other. I was not very transparent either but that's because of who I am and nothing to do with any gang. The few people who I've been able to open up with know that.


The secondary problems arose because of ego. You hurt me so am going to hurt you. Luckily for a long time I've never had such an ego problem and was even naive to notice when others provoked.


And finally, a feeling of superiority over others is what stumps must people in their lives. I laugh at this sort of feeling people have about themselves. Truly like a chicken challenging a slaughter house.

Conclusions

So all the discussions because we had to mend certain things. Honestly speaking I needn't have been fully involved since I've never had a problem with the people who needed to be taught a lesson, I had a problem with their group behaviour and back talking. So when these elements were either pushed out or eliminated, the gang though war hurt looked better. 

And now it has people with sensitivity and sensibility, more importantly some potential of maturity. I'm not above them, I also fall in the potential batch. And we have kickstarted a new phase one that has overcome the past and builds up from scratch for the future. 

I'm writing this in October actually knowing fully well that this is how our friendship will turn out to be. It's noteworthy that we have known or been friends for more than half a decade now :)

Cheers for the day we get to this!

December 14, 2014

25: Neither too young nor too old

This was a very important year for me and although not as special as I had imagined it to be, it was special in its own way. The idea of listing down he highs and lows seems to be the best thing to put down next but I would rather just jot down whatever I have learnt through the year:
  • Being responsible and sensitive: 
    • be it while driving, chatting with friends or just plain working; I've realized its very important to be alert and responsible. 
    • Also, its important to respect each other be it at work, play or home and that is the best way to get forward in life. 
  • Action is always better than inaction: 
    • It takes time to push oneself to do things that become somewhat insignificant in life owing to priorities and I liked to play it my way most of the times. 
    • But in this day and age its very easy to forget somebody's birthday you never missed all your life or getting back to a message/email you could have responded to immediately. So in all such cases having reminders and adhering to them becomes important. 
    • Although, the consequences of becoming forgetful because we have nothing to remember is scary. 
  • Absorbing things quickly and consolidating as you go: 
    • I would love to know if this comes without the experience of having to going through a voluminous amount of work. This is one of the primary reasons I had joined work immediately after college rather than pursue higher studies. 
    • As my cousin said, I'm pursuing the karmic nirvana which just seems to go a little further with each step. Hopefully I'll catch up with it before Firefox version numbers catch up with that of Chrome. 
  • The trick in life and to a marathon: 
    • The trick is to never stop
    • Like a marathon we shouldn't be content finishing only half the work and must focus on completing it. Work and life are like never-ending marathons. 
    • And from my experience, if you keep learning you'll keep discovering more work and understand where to find more work. 
    • Its very important to not stop working nor stop thinking about work as that is the best way to keep improving oneself. 
  • Doing the most important thing first
    • It took me a lot of time to convince my mind that something more important needs to be addressed first. I think the reason for this was I was trying to find a comfort zone and didn't want to leave it before knowing fully what the comfort zone was. 
    • But doing the most important things first also translates to doing the difficult stuff first and putting yourself out of comfort zones. 
  • Controlling your 'giving it back' attitude:
    • I've always felt throughout the last year that its important to give it back to people when they don't treat you the right way or do something hurtful. Ironically, in a year where Kohli (the man with the temper) rose I've realized the calmer way is the right way to deal with things. 
      • In fact I would say not bothering about it and carrying on with your work is the best way. 
      • There are those rare childhood friends you'll have who won't invite you for their marriage, and form malignant opinions about everyone. You can always draw a line for them ;) 
Mysteries to crack for the new year (mostly from the Gita)

I'll just take up two things: 
  • how do we detach ourselves from work and still excel. 
  • how to treat equally the success and failure resulting from work. 
26 sounds formidable :D 

November 7, 2014

That sleepless drive



For a few week/months now, I'm unable to sleep. Entirely untrue on weekends of course, I sleep a log then. But otherwise, on workdays I cannot put myself to sleep at all.

Its everything:
- the excitement of work and working
- wanting to learn new things and
- the knowledge that there is so much to know.
As quoted again and again: a dream is something that does not let you sleep. 

I've been a bit concerned about health though, you know better sleep, better exercise leads to better work. But I had never looked at work as work, the collegian feeling continues. Ironically, I never treated college like college either I took it up like work.

So thoughts such as that or this-if you want to get something done, take up some other important thing and you'd eventually switch to the original task-are keeping my subconscious occupied for most part of the time.


I've (re) found that eliminating the distractions and focusing on the things that matter will make all the difference between good and great work.

Cheers for the remaining week. Oh and I didn't get tickets for Interstellar day 1 :| shall watch it on Monday.
 

October 28, 2014

Deep thoughts - I

I thought deeply about this quote and found how true it has been in my life. I needn't share those instances, I think everyone would come across such situations more often than not. But like celebrities we must tell ourselves that its not because of us, its because what is thought of us.

October 22, 2014

HBD Susheel

I missed wishing a couple of my closest buddies on their 25th birthdays due to a common problem of improper communication/wrong planning. The part I rue most, though, is me thinking that I should go with the group and that 'we' is better than 'me'. 

But in such cases and especially when the time may not return ever again, it would be better to go with me than we. I love me :D

Wish you a very happy birthday Susheel maybe this lesson will be of use to you as well sometime in the future :)

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