Saturday, August 19, 2017

Hide & Seek : Revelation

Few weeks back, I was having breakfast, in a restaurant, at the hotel I was staying in. I saw two kids playing hide and seek there. One of them had parked himself behind a column to hide from the seeker. I could sense the thrill of hiding and getting found out. 

I could remember my childhood days, when we also used to play the game of hide and seek, now and then. The 'hider' was very empowered, while job of the 'seeker' was at times frustrating. 

As I kept watching those kids, having a mouthful of pongal, a morbid thought crossed my mind. What if the seeker stops looking for the hider?

There would be no thrill in the game and in fact the seeker would be far more empowered. The hider would lose interest eventually and move away. It was a moment of reflection, a moment of revelation. That scene at the restaurant and the morbid thought has kept me haunted since.

Imagine a life, where you stop seeking! Won't you be more empowered? I know, it is simple to say and very difficult to practice. Also human race has progressed, because it looked for answers to its questions, sought solutions to its problems and seeks to do so even today. So can we really stop seeking?

But look around yourself. Somewhere we lost the ability to seek the right things. I feel happy one day, and down in the dumps the next. What brings about such extreme highs and lows? Are we looking for wrong things or are we looking too hard? Can we keep seeking, but stop expecting? Is it possible?

Stephen Hawking, the well renowned physicist, once said in an interview, “My expectations were reduced to zero when I was 21. Everything since then has been a bonus."

In this statement, he clearly differentiates between what he seeks and what he expects. His journey to unravel the universe and its mysteries has nothing to do with his expectations. Has he actualised the Geeta Saar in its most literal sense?

Another way to look at this issue is from human relationships point of view. I used to care for and do things for certain people, when they neither asked for it nor deserved it. They used this weakness of mine, without me realising it. I was like that 'seeker' who was looking for an acknowledgement. Then after a catastrophic incident few months back, when one of those beneficiaries (of my care and goodwill) questioned my motives, I realised my folly. I severed all ties from that individual, stopped seeking any acknowledgment from that person or anyone in my life like that. I have been in a happier space since then.

Don't fall in love with the idea that you are a giver. There is a supreme being who enables you to do so. Don't make idols of people who inspired you sometime in past. Everyone falls. Expect them to. Stop helping those who don't believe in hard work and learning. Those nincompoops will come back and bite you. In your butt. Stop being a seeker and feel more empowered.

But trust people. Even if you are betrayed, trust them. That's what keeps the humanity going. Keep your family and friends close. They are your ultimate support system. Seek the power to withstand all the tribulations from the inside of your mind.

'Hide and Seek' is a silly game anyways. Try 'Snakes and Ladders' instead! It always keeps you in play, despite the bites.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

When you have to pee...

The seat belt sign is switched on and the plane is being prepared for landing. At that precise moment, you get an urge to pee. Does it happen often with you? Do you take the risk to walk up to that claustrophobic washroom and relieve yourself?

After a hard day's work, you get into your bed, covered in a cozy blanket. As you wait for sleep to engulf you, you feel a stirring down there. Do you get out of the bed immediately or do you hold your bladder unsuccessfully for that urge to subside?

It is a holiday, and you are watching a movie in a multiplex, when the Pee-Force strikes you. Would you answer nature's call or would you squirm in your seat because you don't want to miss that pelvic move which Katrina is about to make?

You are in your appraisal and your boss has just completed a discussion on your areas of improvement and failures for the year. Now, he intends to go to the next part (he has been forced by HR to complete that part), where he has to state your key achievements and discuss your strengths. At that moment, you realize that you have had too much water during the appraisal. Would you risk excusing yourself at that moment?

There are always circumstances compelling enough, when you don't listen to your body, but to your heart. 

But then there are situations when you have to pee, you must pee.

If you are on your first date and 'the other' is talking animatedly with you, at that moment, if you have to pee, you must pee. Otherwise, your facial contortions will send a wrong message or may indicate that you are not interested. Instead, find a really cool way to excuse yourself at that moment. Maybe, you should come back with an earbud and announce loudly - "I am all ears"

If you are texting with your wife on a Friday evening, and she asks a really tough question like, "When will you come home?" At that moment, if you have to pee, you must pee. Otherwise you would, under pressure, send an inane reply, like, "Soon!" Instead, wait for a moment, find the nearest urinal and while taking a piss think of a creative way to tell her that you are going out for drinks with your colleagues. In fact ask her to join you. Don't forget to mention the fact, that the girl in your office, whom she hates, is also going to come.

If you are driving through a jungle on a moonless night... Now, would you really do that? I doubt. 

Just mind your Pee's & Q's always. 

Now, I have to pee, so I must pee.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Songs of Life

I watched a film called "Meri Pyaari Bindu" last month. It is a rom-com and a badly made one. But there was a concept in the film, which stayed back in my mind. The lead couple has a playlist of certain songs which define their relationship. These are not necessarily good songs, or even their favorites. But songs that trigger memories. I had written about instances or memories that define strong relationships in this post. I felt like revisiting the theme, but from the perspective of songs.

So here is a list of songs (not in a chronological order) and the memories they bring alive even today. They are not necessarily great songs. But definitely associated with strong memories. 

Kullu & Manali Trips

Summer vacations were always fun. I used to love even the holidays' homework that came along with them. Making charts and scrapbooks was more a pain for my mother, rather than for me. I remember this particular stretch of three years, when my father took us all to Kullu & Manali for few days. Yes! same holiday destination, every year for three years. Of course, each time the group we went along with, was different. And each time we discovered something new. 

On one of these trips, I listened to the songs of film Mohra on loop in our car. And sang along loudly as well. The songs were risqué and had double meaning lyrics. But at that time, I didn't understand all that. Whenever I listen to these songs even today, the memories of those Kullu Manali trips, come gushing back. So here is the most played song of the album and most probably your favorite too, if you have grown up in that decade. Tu Cheez Badi Hai Mast Mast!!!

Cable TV

Do you remember the days, when you had to wait for Wednesdays or Sundays to watch your favorite film songs on Doordarshan? Rangoli and Chitrahaar must be getting all the TV ratings in those days. With advent of cable TV, all that changed for ever. Songs were now available on tap. There were umpteen countdown shows. And one song ruled the charts for many many months, in nascent years of cable TV. This song was part of a film (Hum Aapke Hain Kaun) that brought families back to cinema halls. So while this song has several associations for me, the strongest one is 24 X 7 TV channels. Go ahead and listen to Didi Tera Devar Deewana...


Antakshari is a game played in Indian subcontinent. The word itself is concatenation of two Hindi words - Ant (End) and Akshar (Letter). It is a game where people / teams have to sing songs starting with last letter of the song or verse sung by previous person / team. I am sure you have several memories of those school trips, college excursions, parties, family functions etc. where you played this game. Some people like me, sing really cheesy songs like "Bharo Maang Meri Bharo"or "Ki Ki Ki Mohabbat Ki Ki" which people remember for their sheer stupidity. But this one Antakshari changed the way Antakshari was played for ever. The moment some one sings the song "Aaja Aayi Baahar, " inadvertently you would guess the next set of songs till you reach "Kaate Nahi Kat te yeh din yeh raat". Watch this Antakshari to know why 😼 from the film 'Maine Pyar Kiya'.

My break-up song

It is the song associated with one of the saddest phases of my life. My girlfriend at that time, left India for ever, to settle in a cooler country. I was so much in love with her, that I listened to sad songs whole day long, and kept thinking about her. I didn't want to get distracted. I wanted to wallow in the pain caused by this heart break and her memories. And then this song came along (Mitran di Chatri By Babbu Maan). The lyrics felt so apt at that point of time. The song literally talked about a girl going abroad. Irony. Listen to my heartbreak song. In hindsight, it sounds funny. And I found love again. Many times over. 

Wife & Me

We were seeing each other for a year, before we got married. And I still clearly remember the first film we watched together - 'Welcome.' It was December of 2007. It is one of the funniest films we have seen together. It was an exciting date. We laughed a lot that day. And there was this one particular song in the film which my wife took a fancy to. I am not sure what she liked in it, the video, or the lyrics, or the fact that my wife is as tall as me. She looks even taller when she wears heels. The song alluded to the height of the girl. There is a sense of mischief in the song. So every time, I listen to this song, I think of my wife and that first film we watched together. 

There are several other songs and several related memories. Do you have a playlist too?