Thursday, September 27, 2007

decisions, yet again

It is not important to worry about what you want to do as long as you are sure of what you do not want to do.

Backward thinking does help tremendously. I used to worry a lot about the forward angle and worry about finding it so easy to figure out what I do not want and never be able to quite figure out what I want. But it is quite the opposite. Knowing what you want to avoid is a certainty not to be passed out on.

From about a year ago:

In the locality of the here and now, all decisions can only be baseless. We can hardly comprehend the vast array of the multiple factors that affect us and our lives. Yet we fret over decisions so much, spend so much time and energy on them. And then we claim to have made informed decisions. The truth, my friend, is that us folks of the third rock are masters at self delusion.

But it is good that we do not have access to all the factors that we should pay heed to. The overwhelming vastness of possible choices and outcomes, coupled with the fact that no one knows what they really want is terrifying.

So we trudge along, pretending to have made the right decision looking forward ten years into the future, and believing so even ten years hence thus having the magnanimous capacity of accepting what we are dealt out.


One comes across people mentioning The Power Of Now so often that it has almost become clich├ęd. But last week I had a chance to experience it first hand.

The remote control of my DVD player had conked off suddenly and none of the showrooms seemed to have thought about that eventuality. So I would have had to go to the service centre sooner rather than later. But I also managed to get the phone number of a person who manufactured these remote controls locally and would deliver it to my place. I was rather skeptical of buying something I knew had a good chance of conking out after a week and paying for it when I knew I should be getting a replacement for free from the service centre, being still in warranty. So when this guy called up to check a day after I had gotten the details from him, I was going to say no - I was ready to wait a couple of more days and go to the right place and get the real thing without having to pay for it.

Then this man said he would bring it across to my place and he would do it within an hour or so. And that changed the entire equation! I quickly enumerated reasons to not wait and I did buy the remote from him.

I realized that had this guy said he would deliver it the next day, I would have said no. The immediate can be very, very forceful.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

past sin

There are innumberable jokes about Microsoft error messages and their writers, but this one takes the cake:

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


"Hurray, I won the auction!" said John.
"What you 'won' was the right to pay more for something than everyone else thought it was worth", said Mary.

Monday, September 10, 2007

what's your story?

Everybody has a story. What's yours?

Well, everybody does not have a story, not yet anyway. But everybody needs a story. Because that's the only way you can engage with someone or something.

Some people's stories are the work they've done. Or are doing. Some stories are about the books one has read or the movies one has watched. Some write their stories first, and then make them happen while some just see a story weave out by its own. Some people's stories are other people and some other people's stories are other stories.

Apple's (or the iPod's or iMac's or iPhone's) story is that of Steve Jobs' - iconoclast, maverick, successful, ultra-cool. Ferrari's story is the colour red. New Zealand's story is The Lord Of The Rings. Roger Federer's story is the poise. Shilpa Shetty's story (at least for a while) was the racial slander. Vijay Mallya's story is the glamour. A friend's story is the latest exasperating thing that happened to her. Another friend's story is his experiences of a new culture...

So, what's your story?

Sunday, September 9, 2007

wonder years

So I got hold of the first season of The Wonder Years recently and I didn't think I'd like watching it again after all these years. What is it - 10 years perhaps? I thought it would be too childish. And I have never had so much fun watching anything as I did watching Wonder Years again.

It was still unique and I identified so much with the narrator this time round. The last time I had seen Kevin and Winnie I would hope my heart out that my life could be as interesting or fun as theirs. And now as I watched it again, I realised that my childhood had been very very similar - I just hadn't noticed then. I don't think I've ever become really nostalgic about my childhood or school. I have missed it and thought about it - but not this way. This time for the first time it all seemed really far away, almost surreal. I think I felt old for the first time in my life.