Wednesday, December 26, 2007

My defence against being different

This notion of being different, I notice, has gained mass popularity amongst GenX/Y/Z/iGen or whatever it is being called these days. So much so, that the impetus behind a lot of actions that the youth around me embarks on is provided solely by the motivation to be different, to appear distinctively from the norm. Being different, as such, is misunderstood by many as the path that will lead to higher platforms. The character of backing your instincts to follow your dreams even if it takes you away from the well worn path, is truly wonderful and appreciable. But clear distinction must me made between this virtue and that of purposely rejecting a path because it is well worn and doing something out of the box for the sake of being different. Unfortunately, it is this brand of 'being different', that has found widespread acceptance.

To clearly express my defence against it, I must first state the argument of those for it. I am often told, and often I read about the remarkable success of some distinguished personalities based upon how different they were. And it makes me crazy - firstly the immature analysis behind such statements and secondly the silly instant acceptance of it. That people like Edison, Einstein, or even Steve Jobs were and are great men is absolutely true. And so is the fact that they were different. And so is the fact that this difference was what put them so distinctly ahead. But to conclude from this 'to be great, be different' is as immature as saying that the Silicon Valley will do great business this year since guavas had a good yield last year in Orrisa. So to say, it makes no sense. True that they were different, but if difference was all there was to it, then even the drunkard who drinks all day on the road should be great on the grounds of being different. Precisely speaking, it wasn't the existence of a difference that mattered, but what that difference actually was, an intricacy often ignored in today's glossy reporting. Its not about whether you are different from the others, its about what is it that sets you apart. If being different in itself was a criterion then everyone should have had some claim to prominence, since no two individuals are ever identical. So when I see people with their usernames that read like Name - be different, or XYZ - not in the norm, minor concerns arise in my consciousness as to whether this person actually understood the meaning behind it or got carried away by some irresponsible but fascinating portrayal of the same.

That this concern is not completely unwarranted, is certain. How else can one explain the fact that people, young educated guys and girls from cities like Delhi and Mumbai, are part of online communities that Hail Hitler, those which say Dawood Ibrahim is a genius, and those which say Secularism sucks. Perhaps a minute percentage of their members truly believe in these ideas (that no one with a sound brain would), but to believe that all of them actually endorse such ideas after a well thought internal deliberation, defies all common sense. It is very clear, that the desire to 'appear' different propels a majority of such apparently rebellious memberships.

On a lighter and different note, am I wrong in assuming that 'different' is one of the most inappropriately and overused words in the English language? All across Orkut, I see testimonials and about-me's that claim the person to be such a 'different' person, that it makes me wonder if ninety percent of the people are 'different', then what's different about being different.

Thursday, December 20, 2007


I am doing a tag today because Lavender tagged me. This is my second tag. This was the first one about an year and a half ago. I hope I've got saner with time, lets see. So without any further ado, lets get started.

1.Pick out a scar you have, and explain how you got it ? Yes actually I got sort of carried away the other day with that Russian lass entering the Metro. Aaah! It still hurts, she had such long pointed nails.

2. What does your phone look like ?
It looks like Katrina Kaif. Happy?

3.What is on the walls of your bedroom?
I don't have a bedroom specifically to myself. So I lay down in any of the rooms, and all of them have different things on their walls. Anyway, my hostel room has the following things on its walls :
a) Cracks
b) paint stacks breaking out
c) my shoeprints
d) dead bodies- (c) and (d) are inter-related. My shoes kill the mosquitoes on the walls.
e) Lizards
f) Spiders and Spider nets
g) Big cracks

4. What is your current desktop picture?
Currently, it is Mahatma Gandhi. Actually changed it only yesterday. Before that it was Mother Teresa. Preceding it were pictures of Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Nelson Mandela, Al Gore, Bharat Mata, Sai Baba, Lord Rama and family, Asaaramji Bapu, Sudhanshu Ji Maharaj, Baba Ramdev, Hope you got the drift. I am not one of those perverts who keep all that 'haaa ji'/'chhee' stuff as their wallpapers. Really I am not. I am one of those perverts who keep them in a hidden folder.

5.Do you believe in gay marriage?
What's there to believe in. If two men tell me that they got married, so its obviously a gay marriage, and I have no reason to believe they are lying. So yes, I believe in gay marriages. So to say, I FIRMLY believe in gay marriages. Otherwise, how will he, I mean, how will we.. Ooops! I am not supposed to tell you all that.

6. What do you want more than anything right now?
I want gay marriages to be legalised in India. I've heard migration to Netherlands and Canada is a tough task indeed.

7. Are your parents still together?
Yeah, still together. Vaise what was the need of this 'still' in the question. 'Are your parents together?' would have meant the same thing, minus the amazement at parents being together. Its like saying - Uff abhi tak saath hain tumhare maa baap, bade old fashioned hain yaar. Must have been an American who made this tag. Could have been a member of the Kasauti Zindagi Kay teleserial family too, I am not sure.

8. Last person who made you cry?
Myself. No one else can. Exceptions include Uday Chopra and Tushar Kapoor. But I have been cleverly avoiding them of late.

9. What is your favourite perfume/cologne ?
Ooooooh how much I've waited for this question to be put up to me. I always saw this question in those glossy magazines where every one had so many new names to tell, I wondered how much people research to get down to the perfume type most suited to them. So my answer is 'Elizabeth Arden's Daytona 500'!! Impressive naa ? I picked it up from Nana Patekar's interview, or was it Mithun Chakraborty's ?

10. What are you listening to?
Nagging from Mummy. I didn't take a bath yesterday. And today's just not that kind of a day you'd like to leave your blanket you know. But she doesn't understand all that. Today I am thinking of taking a bath in Daytona 500 itself, so that she doesn't complain for the rest of the vacations.

11. Do you get scared of the dark?
I get scared even when dogs bark, let alone dark. When our tubelight fluctuates - I am like [:)] -> [:(] -> [:)] -> [:(] -> [:)] -> [:(] -> [:))] bach gaye! Jai Shri Ram!

12. Do you like pain killers?
Oh yes I like them a lot. They are just soooo lovely. Aren't they soooo seductive, with their silvery metallic covering, so lustrous and shiny, ooooooh. Look I am getting turned on already. Oh Combiflam!! My darling, where are you ? I have a secret crush on Rofecoxib also. Sssshh don't you tell anyone.

13. Are you too shy to ask someone out ?
Actually yes. I can't even say a hyper happy Hiiiiiieee! A 'Hi' is all I am capable of. Also, I am too shy to ask someone to get out, if that was what the question intended to ask.

14. If you could eat anything right now, what would it be?
Daal baati ? But that's because I don't eat non veg on Thursdays.

15. Who was the last person who made you mad?
He made me mad. The way he glanced at me and immediately turned his eyes the other way. And then again leered at me until I caught him… oops I am not supposed to tell you all that. No one made me mad, haan nahi to!

16. Who was the last person who made you smile?
Myself!! I have been so proud of my answers here! I have already patted my back a thousand times answering these questions! Arre waah S*****t, tu toh kamaal hai , tu toh Raju Srivastava hai, tu yeh hai , tu voh hai, bhai waah, chhaa gaya, shabaash, and all that. What a self obsessed smug am I !?! So much that my back is aching now after all that patting. Nooo, I will not take the bath now. Nooooo!

17. Is someone in love with you ?
My parents love me a lot, my brother too, yeah grandparents too, one of my uncles surely! Yeah, that much. On those lines ? Oh no one's romantically inclined and all that. Wait a minute, maybe he is !

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Reflections on what this blog was and shouldn't have been

Today is one of those days on which things don’t flow the way you wish they would. One of those days things don't go right. Actually, these are important days. Such days are far more important, I feel, than those on which everything just clicks.

I have often felt this nudge that stops me from writing some things, all for the reason that I am conscious of the fact that people, even if only one or two, do read it. So I often found myself writing things and then deleting them later all because doubts occur to me somewhere if that stuff is appropriate to write on a blog. I reflected upon it for a moment the other day and somehow felt strongly that I should be entitled to write whatever I think. In other words, things that I would have written in case no one ever read them, should be written by me even if it is read. Because only then, in true sense, I can see it as an unadulterated reflection - a purpose which I think personal blogs primarily should be for. This, however, does not mean that all I had been editing out were things straight out of a hooligan's dictionary. But there were times when what I wrote wasn't exactly justifying the extent to which I should have written it to, if I were honest. For instance, on occasions when I did something I was very happy about and felt as if I have achieved something substantial, thoughts of being understood as an egotist by others discouraged me from writing them, or the fear of the written stuff being perceived as self praise. Similarly, sometimes I was neck deep in guilt and I cleverly mellowed down the self bashing, only so as not to 'appear' really all that bad. Quite naturally, I'd surely never have omitted my memorable achievements and my valuable mistakes, if I were to be writing it entirely for myself, the way it should ideally be. And without them, alas, this blog of mine is only a distorted reflection of me - certainly not something I wanted it to be.

@ Lavender : Oh, this doesn't turn out to be a happy post either. But you do understand the mood these days, don't you. Maybe next time around, I'll write the sequel to 'The Try : Part 1', I hope that will be fun. After your comment , I actually scanned my blog a bit, and found out the last 'happy post' was 'The Try' on Oct 10th. Since that too was fiction, the last actual happy-post was on Oct 4th. That’s full two and a half months! Gawd! I've become so gloomy all this while and never realised. Thanks you reminded.