life, materialistic philosophy, philosophical me, reflections of time

Variables and Constants

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Thousands of miles on my car and thousands of lines of code on my editor later, I am back to my blog trying to reflect on the days gone by and make myself feel greater than I am and preaching to how one should lead ones life.

Some say that it is the fourth dimension of our existence, some say that it can curve under the influence of gravity some say that it is the greatest healer but all I know that time is something that exist in calendars and recorded in my brain cells as collection of hormonal changes. Since we humans owe our very existence to the giant furnace called Sun, it is no wonder that we have always defined in terms of where we were relative to Sun at the moment when the event had come to pass. Due to the actions of many a religious preachers who wanted to replace paganism with Christianity and yet maintain similar festivals, we can say that the current year is 2013.

Things as they are, so long we are alive, we do realize the arrival and passing by of time. By some strange coincidence, 2013 has been unlike any other year I have lived. All the people with whom i had spent my college days started taking life changing decisions. Every month one of my friend was getting married. This will also be the first year where there will be nobody in my college campus who had joined while I was a student. Marriages of close friends in quick succession plays out very funnily . You see your friend circle split into two singles and the rest. To start off the rest are the outcast minority but with every occasion you realise the dynamics are changing and before you know you are hanging out only with your juniors and then their juniors . I guess I am blessed in that – I have no shame and a lot of pride in screaming that while most people had friends restricted to their own batch or one batch up and down, I used to hangout with people across all batches so there is still time before all the juniors are exhausted. I can still refuse to grow up.

If 2013 was seminal to a few of my friends , it shall also be an abnormal year for me. For the first time in four years I am without a job. In spite of loving my job as much as anyone can love their job, I have quit to start my company and figuring out what to do. This brings me to the title of my post -“variables and constants”, life doing a job is like a constant, you have a degree of predictability. If you are working with ethical people, if you do good, you will progress or someone else will be interested in working with you. While if you are trying to build your own, it is like a  game of variables , you really don’t know what they really are till it is too late, you can take your best guess and soldier on. Quite interestingly, some variables are in your control while the others are not.

At times it can be intimidating trying to fathom all the variables governing our lives. For all the criticism vented out at ostriches for hiding in the sand at the sight of trouble, I feel that works well for me.  I have found it better to concentrate on the variable that I have control on rather than the infinite number of them over which I have no control. As a type 2 diabetic with weight issues I had my share of health issues. Having lost over ten kilo- over the last year, I now have some authority on this subject, I found that instead of focussing on my weight it was better to concentrate on how fast I could run and how much. Weight was the outcome that had a lot of variables which I did not fully comprehend while running was a function of variables over which I had full control.  Being 27 and never having had a girl friend is not something I am proud of especially considering my parents  had the guts to marry(elope) defying one set of my grandparents. But the weight loss experiments tells me it’s no shame being the poster boy of “Forever  alone” meme, it sucks that I had not even tried in my life.  Pursuing only 1 girl over a time span of 27 years is not something to be proud of. So here I am trying to ponder what is the variable I should concentrate on.

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life, Literary experience, materialistic philosophy, philosophical me

Broken Resolve

You may have forgotten

All the words I have spoken

All the prayers that I once said

May have been destined to be waste.

I have protests to make

Tears to shed

Blood to bleed.

But I swallow my words

Dry my eyes and pause my heart…

All with a hope that you are free from all my grumbles and all my rumbles.

But some fine day,

A few forgotten emotions comes knocking at my doors

My resolve breaks and my walls crumble..

And I ask myself why do I wish to swim like a fish and fly like a bird

When all I can do it walk like a man and cry like a woman…

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musical infatuation, philosophical me, tribute, Uncategorized

Personal Tribute to a person with whom I neither had a personal nor professional relation

My parents say I was born on 15th of May 1986 . Having no memories of the day in question or for that matter any day in the eighties, I can do little but trust the people who are the reason I have grown up to be a person who can, among other things, put thoughts onto paper or into network, the choice of words being left to fight between the literary and figurative thoughts of our brain. Inexplicably, in some ways the clarity and shape of my very first memories of human life have been far consigned to some remote corner of my brain from where they refuse to create any decipherable sights and sounds. For a child born in the eighties, my most distant memories are from the nineties that followed the eighties. Maybe this is the connection that I share with all the children born on that hot day. A connection not as mystical as the connection between Salim Sinai and the rest of midnight’s children but a connection, nonetheless, that has no traceable outlines or any touchable edges.

Among other things, I did not have any say in was the name,the place and mother-tongue I was to be identified with for my life. For some, still mysterious and unknown reason, there was a sense of pride in all the three aspects of my life that was thrust-ed down my metaphorical throat. Now that my emotional and intellectual self was moulded .beyond repair by the time I started storing my first longterm memories , it was all but natural for me to create the portrait of the people I shall idolize for my life. An Assamese as I was, there was no dearth of Assamese heroes but from Sankardev to Lachit to Bishnu Rabha, they chose to exist only in the pages of history. No living person seemed great enough to compete with the long dead heroes for a piece of my awe. However there was an exception, the solitary link between my motherland and the world. No mosaic of India seemed complete without the presence of this black cap adorned old man. The fact that he answered to same surname as mine did no harm to the stability of the tall monument of this man who had started rising in my mind.

In my earliest remembered days, I used to jump up and down when the sole Assamese man could be seen on television sets, I used to jump up and down saying that koka (Assamese for grandfather) was on TV. In those days, I didn’t know what Filmfare or Oscars were but I knew what Dada Saheb Phalke and Asia-Pacific International Music prize was. By class five, I had shifted to Don Bosco Dibrugarh and I participated in my first singing competition. Due to lack of any formal training and dedication, me forays into the singing lane was limited but I did win my fair share of prizes. Needless to say, the great mans song got me quite a few of those prizes. For a ten-year old, appearing on local television is a big deal, my earlier exploits in songs got me to the team that sang in the school on formal occasions and there I was on TV, humming another of his song. That memory is still strong that even today I remember the tune of the song and the first few lines. A song that I have not hard for the last fifteen years through my physical ears.

The closest I came to Dr. Hazarika in person was on a flight to my home from Calcutta. He seemed happy to know that even I was a Hazarika and gave nice message on my boarding pass. Unfortunately as fate would have it, he wrote it on the place of the security seal and the only proof of our solitary existence was snatched away by security. It was also in my college days that I used Dr. Bhupen Hazarika’s creation for sinister pleasures. We had an annual NCC camp which was very physically demanding, the air force station where we had our camp was headed by an Assamese, so there was a need of and Assamese song on the cultural show. I jumped into the opportunity to laze through the day and rendered one of his creation. All day was spent sleeping while my friends were marching.

All good things come to an end. The great man was a human after all and had to breathe his last. On the day he died, I was relieved. Relieved – this is not a typo – I was pained to see the greatest musician and lyricist of Assam being unable to sing his own songs for last few years. His death had rolled back the years and he was restored to his prime in my memories. The person who towered over all of Assam was no longer present in the body that once represented everything that was great about Assam. But today I feel a sense of pride and sadness and emptiness. Pride to see how his death united all of Assam drowning all divisions of caste,creed or religion. Sadness to know that never again a tune that can outlast a generation be created in Assam,to know that now we have a count on the number of great odes to Brahmaputra. Emptiness to know that next time a portrait of India is painted, not only the tile that was common for my entire life would be absent but probably there wont be any tile for my motherland and mother-tongue.

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philosophical me

Yesterday

Yesterday promised to be another day
 A day when all that I  see bathes in sun ray
A day when every sunflower fights for the touch of sun’s every ray.
But it was yesterday a forlorn souls last day.

The stream that kept my thirst at bay seemed to have run away
There was no garden to gratify my hunger
There was no jester to give me laughter
All I could I could see was snow and ice
But I felt like I was burning in some hot fire.

But my mind refused to surrender
It made me hear sound of some piper
Tricked that bliss lay in the lap of the musical whispers
I walked the road told by an ancient dreamer.

But ‘t was not a lie that I was engulfed fire
‘T was true that the lake was all snowy and people were walking on water
But the warmth of my body melted my road into water
The fire that was roasting me gave way to frost bites.

I grasped for breath
I prayed for air
But I  was no fish with gills
In a dreamy state I made my way to a distant paradise
And today I wait for a kiss of life to wake me from my slumber.

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Hobbies, life, Literary experience, philosophical me

Verse, blank-verse and converse

Although there is no cookbook for wisdom and knowledge, the same cannot be said about the intangible adjective called literate.  For all I can do or wish to do it is now forever etched into my gray matter that the 3 Rs – reading, writing and arithmetic make up the seven course meal called literacy. It is another matter that the gray matter is not gray and arithmetic does not start with an ‘R’ yet this is the very sequence of words I shall tattoo into the minds of any impressionable target that comes across me. Like most middle-class parents of their generation, my parents too thought that I should master the three R’s. I was in school.

The thing about school and blog is that language classes are much more easier to ponder over and ruminate then the numerical theories which I now believe to be the only absolute truth. Scientific theories come and go, Religions are born and buried but if one bird on a tree is joined by another bird, we have only two birds on the tree.The thing about language lessons is that we learn “Twinkle Twinkle little star” and “A for Apple” from beyond the time hidden in my subconscious by the mist of time.  This was my initiation to the world of prose and poetry.

As the years went by, poems changed from small songs to sonnets to blank verse. My English papers periodically had exotic sounding words like “iambic pentameter“. But the thing with poems which I have referred to as verse and blank verse is that I was never really sure if I had diverged from what the writer actually wanted to say. Most of the times , the safe approach was the approach of your teacher.  Even the neurons of time have failed to remove the veil of ignorance that envelops my understanding of words that I had once read.

Even today,some questions remain unanswered. Even today , I can’t help wondering if there is more to the poems than that meets the eye. Even today , I want to wax lyrical but indulge in mundane and intrinsic science called prose writing.

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Citizen me, life, materialistic philosophy, philosophical me

When capitalist me supported the left

For sometime, I have been harbouring a pathological hatred for the left. I can’t fathom why they have to be paranoid against everything that is American. Superficially, it seems they are a prisoner of the past. A past where every allay and highway of economy was stained by the blood of the workers. On a personal level, I can never forgive them for supporting the Chinese when they attacked the land of my ancestors. In some ways, I am also a prisoner of the past although the decry the left for being afflicted with this virus.I also can’t forgive left for economically killing Calcutta and as a consequence all that lay to the east of this erstwhile metropolis.

I have also been a diabetic for the last two years  and my parents have been diabetic for as long as I can remember.I spent over a hundred rupees per day on my medicines and tests. Having blessed with an above average IQ, a middle class upbringing and some fate, I can afford to pay my bills without battling an eyelid. But the over a sixth of India are said to be diabetic and statistically, I doubt even half of them can afford the facilities,I take for granted.This brings me to the question as to whether the drugs that can help billions really need to be so costly. From an economic standpoint, the variable cost of producing extra drugs seems to be negligible this explains why 50 mg of januvia costs the same as 100 mg of the same drug. Besides this obvious lack of ethics on the part of pharmaceutical companies, there is another thought that bothers me. This is about side effects. I may be diabetic, but I hope to live a thousand years, with this end in mine, I watch all my biological parameters by spending more of my blood and sweat. If I am to lie long enough, I have to depend on drugs for a lions share of my heart beats.

For the ignorant, the best example of post of peril will be the location of kidney in a diabetic. Every day of uncontrolled diabetes deals a thousand death nails on the coffin of the kidneys. To make matters worse the toxic parts of medicines have to be filtered by diabetes and each of those molecules takes a test of the kidneys in a way that is definitely not a walk in the park.In some ways the medicines I take are a double-edged sword, it prevents diabetes from harming my kidneys but might be silently killing it.

This paradox drives me to the reason why I am writing this post. Clinical trials and India.  On any other day when the Sun rises from the east, the only reason I envy Pakistan is for their media. Today, I was pleasantly surprised when page 1 of ibnlive did not resemble page 3 of less reputed tabloids which are no more than bread,butter and oxygen of paparazzi. It carried a report on ratification of Indian population.  For the vast majority of you who know what ratification means, I am in no way referring to the literal meaning of the word but only phonetics. For pharmaceutical companies we Indians are nothing but rats whose life can be dispensed off. They have no fear of multi million dollar settlement claims. The answer to whether my kidneys can hold up to the onslaught of years of medicines probably lies in some unethical trials.

Till then in the midst of some inexplicable emotions, I hope the left keeps on fighting the MNCs, the very same MNCs without whom I can’t live.

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Hobbies, Literary experience, philosophical me

When one word speaks a thousand words

As a matter of lack of choice, or rather as a result of murder of choice, not a day passes by in my life when I don’t come across some arrangement of Roman alphabets that always makes sense to my literate mind.But there are some words that are forever condemned to have their existence intertwined with our distant or not so distant past.When I come across those words, a divine orchestra of words fill my day dreaming mind.

One such word that comes to my mind is “melancholy”. If I had ever done grave injustice that sprang to my mind. The first line of this para would definitely find its place as a stinking specimen.  For an inaudible whisper of the word “melancholy” flooded my mind with memories that I had to let it out in this blog. In my not so distant past, I had to study a subject called alternative English. In my school days, it was a subject that definitely compete in the race to be my favourite. You hardly got marks. There was no such thing as right answer or wrong answer. It all depended on how much your teacher liked your answer. But it sure had some of the finest specimens of English literature still not lost in the pages of history.

Wordsworth, I really hope I am not messing up with the name of the great nature poet for I have resolved not to look up the literary piece that forms an integral part of this post. This is done with a misplaced sense of self-righteousness that I can do justice to my memories only if my entire post is untainted with anything but my memories. “Misplaced sense of self righteousness”- rings any bell. In my mind, I hear an explosion of bell metal that numbs my sense of hearing. These words always teleports me to the seats of inox kolktata, and I see joker mouthing these words to batman. Dark knight is a part of my recent memory and weeds have not yet attacked this castle. So, I shall try to quickly pass through my neighbourhood and zoom to my past.

About Wordsworth , he had written a poem called solitary reaper. I really don’t recollect all the words of the poem but a few words have stood the test of time.This was the poem that told me of the existence of the word “lass”. I first heard someone using the word “melancholy notes”. I found myself wandering across the world trying to help Wordsworth decipher what the beautiful lass was trying to sing in a language that he did not understand but in a voice that touched his heart.But therein lies an allegory of my life, whenever I hear the word “melancholy”, a smile spreads on my lips, I race to my school days, and I fail to sympathize with anything and everything sad about the collection of words that needs the word melancholy to describe itself.

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