Word of the Week #167:

Dredge

You know, life is like a cake.

Now, now, stay with me. I’m going somewhere with this.

You see, first, you spend a lot of time getting the ingredients ready. You might have a lot of specific ideas about the ingredients you want to choose but, in the end, you have to take what you get and work with it.

Then you work the ingredients such that they are ready to rise and grow.

Then you put everything in the right conditions, and you hope everything goes well.

Lastly, you add icing and sprinkles and, well, whatever you think you want to make this cake perfect.

Now, I would say that the icing represents the romantic relationships in your life: Some cannot imagine a cake without the icing, while others couldn’t care for it one bit.

I believe I understand cakes well enough to tell a good cake from a bad one, no matter how well you try to hide it under the most flattering of frostings. 

Nonetheless, I won’t imply that I prefer cakes without frosting.

Just, it should be a good cake and a good icing, and the two should match.

Now, when do things go bad? When you try to add icing to raw batter. While the results may be edible, it is not what you wanted, right?

So this is generally sound advice: Don’t add icing to your half-baked life. It is a recipe for disaster.

Advertisements

Word of the Week #166:

Paragon

“This is my everything.”

“That is my entire world.”

We have all heard such lines being used in popular art, right?

The concept is quite common in books and movies and songs. But does it really exist? And if it does, is it really a good thing.

If you cease to function without something, or someone, is that really healthy?

I think we have been conditioned to want things that we do not need, and, often enough, even things that are positively bad for us.

What do you need in a relationship? A fairytale romance? No, that is what you want, not what you need. What you is trust, mutual respect, stability, all that boring stuff that doesn’t quite jump off a page.

How often have we seen people give up on something beautiful, or at least promising, just because it was less than ideal?

How often are we seeing young couples getting divorced less than two years into marriage?

How often are we seeing new recruits quit their jobs within months?

Of course, I’m not one to stop someone from quitting something that is not good for you; indeed, the sooner you do it, the better.

Nor am I one to ask someone not to pursue what they want, or seek to change anything they seem necessary to make their lives better.

Knowing the difference between what you want and what you need is, according to me, something each one of us needs to learn.

I, for one, have always needed to pursue my craziest of wants, irrespective of practicalitities and feasibilities.

I am but a crazy guy, and I would rather die of passion than of boredom.

Honestly, sometimes I think I might be just one bout of extreme boredom away from being a comic book villain.

Wait… What was I talking about?

Eh… Nothing really matters… To me…

Word of the Week #165:

Trepidation

We all fear different things, right?

Actually, I fear a lot of things.

Most of it is normal, you know. Snakes, worms, and other creepy crawly things, heights, lightning, strange people, getting trapped under an oppressive theocratic regime… You know, normal.

However, I do have one fear that might seem rather unusual, though I find it quite rational. I am afraid I will start writing in American English.

It may seem unlikely, even unreasonable, but hear me out.

Over the past few months, I have been working on a lot of projects that required American English, and while I did not enjoy doing it, I managed to trudge through it anyway.

Now, for those who do not see what difference it makes, allow me to offer a sample.

British: “That is my ex,” he said, pointing towards the woman with ‘crazy eyes’.
American: “That is my ex,” he said, pointing toward the woman with “crazy eyes.”

That IS a big difference.

American English is dumb. Ergo, I will start being dumb.

Gah! If that didn’t scare me, I don’t know what would.

Word of the Week #164:

Trampoline

So, I’ve been having a couple of tough days. Like, tough in a very bizarre way.

And instead of whining for a thousand words about how those days were horrible, since that’s not the purpose of this post, may I offer an illustration.

giphy

It happens every now and then, apparently…

But that is not what this post is about. Instead, let us talk about how one can use to avoid spiralling out of control during these brief periods.

No matter how badly I may be freaking out in any given moment, all I need to do is employ a very simple trick.

Take a step back.
Filter out everything that is going wrong.
Focus on everything that is going well.
Use your focus to patch temporarily patch everything.
Continue to work on the long-term solution.

See, one simple trick and I bounce right back.

Word of the Week #163:

Sabbath

I know, I know, it is not Friday. Or Sunday. But I have always been a bit of a Maverick, right?

You see, on most days, I work a lot. Like, a LOT. Through pain, sickness, fatigue, boredom, distractions, whatever. I get my work done, and I am proud of it.

And I am also proud of the fact that I manage to get days to do just nothing at all.

Like, literally nothing at all. 

Shower? Nope.
Lunch? Nope.
Basketball? Nope.
Dinner? Nope.
Music? Nope.
Random streaming? Nope.
Respond to a random work mail? Nope.
Hours and hours of social media? Nope.
A million thoughts swirling through my head? Nope.
Getting off my comfy bed? Nope.

This is what I call taking a day off. Like, literally off.

This is how I can prepare for another week of insanity that has become the norm in my life. 

And sometimes, this is what you need to make sense of the world: Nothing.


PS: I actually did work 9 hours, today, and counted that as nothing. I guess something is really wrong with me. But, I love it.

Word of the Week #162:

Ocular

Normally, I pride myself at being able to work through most sorts of injuries and ailments.

Blinding headaches, incessant colds, harrowing coughs, fractured wrist, broken shoulder, dislocated fingers. I’ve seen it all. And I have worked through it all with nary a complaint.

There is, however, an exception to this rule, as there often is.

I am truly hobbled, you know, figuratively, when something happens to my eyes. That is just the nature of my work, you see.

And yet, I will maintain that I may have been slowed down, I can never truly be stopped.

I am inevitable.

Word of the Week #161:

Participatory

These days, our Social Media feeds tend to be flooded with people sharing their inked fingers.

For those unfamiliar with our democratic system, please refer to the following:

02-04-15-pg08a
Courtesy: Hindustan Times

As you can see, newspapers in India could definitely use a few good copyeditors…

Now, as I was saying, it is gladdening to see the youth as enthusiastic about voting as they are.

However, I do take objection to the narrative that voting is the epitome of our democratic participation. Our work does not end the moment we vote; that is when it begins.

Once we have cast our vote, we need to ensure the government appropriately represents our interests by staying apprised its operation, and by letting our voices be heard.

Voting without being informed about the performance of the past governments and the agenda of its opponents turns the entire electoral system into a popularity contest.

Quite honestly, even the Student Council elections in my college were based more on policy than some of the past elections I have seen.

“Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.”
Franklin D. Roosevelt