A song to make me smile and make me cry


My years in the world of consumer internet has successfully rewired a lot of  my neurons. I ,now , believe that any opinion standing on the shoulders of anecdotal evidence should be taken with a healthy dose of skepticism. I also process to be against hypocrisy. Yet, the very same neural patterns which have colluded to form my current worldview makes me make a conjecture that all human beings like music. While it is true that one person’s music may be other persons noise, every person I have met in my life likes some music or other.  My own likes and dislikes are an over-represented data-set of my universal set of data points.  This was a rather convoluted way of saying I love to listen to songs.

For me my love for singing sometimes goes beyond listening. I was once a semi decent singer. I have a few fragments of papyrus alluding to my vocal chords . I used my vocal chords to make a few of my ragging sessions to singing sessions.  In fact, I had used it to escape from physical drill of my first year NCC camp’s physical training . I performed a so-called musical performance for three minutes for the end of camp cultural performance and spent the rest of the camp practicing the song (eating food) and putting on weight while my friends went through a hellish boot camp.. While I no longer perform for an audience of more than me , I still try to learn a song once a while.

I come from a place called Assam and learned to express myself in Assamese. For as long as I can we always had an over-abundance of great music. The fact that our most important festival is all about song and dance could have a role in this. Invariably and frequently, I come across a song that touches my heart. I have away from my motherland for the last decade and a half. In these years, I have spoken very few Assamese words. I have seen  Assamese transition from my first language to second language to third and back to second. Today, Assamese is my second language but my vocabulary is bankrupt.

Yet, I feel an emotional connect when listening to Assamese songs which I do not feel when I listen in other languages. Of the songs that touched me, the song Majuli touched me a lot. I have never been to Majuli, It has always been an answer to a general knowledge question to largest river island of the world. I am not sure if it is the largest island in the world but our Assam based text books, sure, think it to be true. Whenever, I try to try to learn this song, I feel my eyes getting mist.


I feel sad that I do not know the meaning of all the worlds used in the song. At the same time the visuals of lusty green and flooded fields overwhelms my endocrine system. The sight of Assamese temple is very confusing. I no longer believe in existence of God and avoid religious ceremonies like plague. Yet it transports me to the days when I used to accompany my grandfather to our home temple as he conducted prayers. My grandfather who was far ahead of his times and did not care for the fact I was a product of inter-caste marriage. I see small kids sing to a joyous song to the tune of this melancholy song and get my emotions astounded, I should feel happy seeing happy faces but I feel sad. I see the colours of my state and I remember that it is reeling under unprecedented floods and I am not doing much to help. I feel anguish at the lethargy of fellow clan members which makes us languish at the bottom of the rat race of global civilization. I get distracted by song’s part about grandmothers love and the accompanying visuals of a kitchen. I travel back to my childhood to my grandmother’s kitchen. Everyone in the family had to eat in the dining room but I was special to my grandmother, My seat was always near my grandmother’s stove and nobody was given food till I had food. I remember my grandparents who are no longer alive. I remember the house in my village which has been long consumed by expanding river banks of Brahmaputra and then I listen to the same song in an infinite loop.



Variables and Constants


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.

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.

Wake Up!! Sachin does not exist

Romulus and Remus built Rome, Moses led the people of the book to the promised Land after splitting the ways of water, Abraham saved the world, Hanuman carried a mountain from the Himalayas to Ceylon. Superhuman tasks that if true surely deserves more than a bow from us. But apart from superhuman fables, they are all fables.Persons that exists in fragments of human imagination. The feats of the purported individual called Sachin might seem less superhuman than the illustrious fables  that marks the alpha of this post but then there is no denying the fact that his feats if not backed by corruptible videos will be b rushed aside by any non-lunatic.

But then using todays technology Rajni can split bullets and make it appear believable so a rational mind should never ever go by videos alone. Even if the videos were true just compare the centuries made in early nineties and late 2000’s. Do the person hitting the runs appear remotely similar. Why are all the other players playing cricket different? These two logical arguments make me aware of the truth behind the myth of Sachin and also convince others to see the same.

As I prepare to place my next argument, a random movie dialogue comes to my mind “Gods envy us for we are mortals”. I don’t know whether Gods envy us or if the omnipotent character exists but I do know we are mortals . Our physical self ages and decays. Everything in life comes with an expiry date.In any sport requiring more physical activity than golf, ten years is a lifetime . If you are the best for five years you are among the greatest but if you are among the best for ten years you are the greatest and the spin doctors claim Sachin has been the best for over two doctors. Seriously, are they talking about some unknown chemical formula we have no idea about or are they talking about our own body that stays with us a lifetime. See through this marketing scam !!!

Another thing that makes us human is our adrenaline when some one abuses you unjustly you feel angry that is probably the reason why you are not hanged to death if you kill some one in hot blood. At least this is the norm in non barbaric nations . Non-barbaric punishment for barbaric acts . The pr gurus claim that you only get a smile when you abuse this character who is certified by one sixth of the world to be God.

Last but not the least remember the age-old idiom “to err is human, to forgive divine”. I dont know what is divinity but being a man, I know we are bound to err!! But this creation of human imagination a ala the Gods of mythology has never erred in his years before the camera.

With these few words I end my case with  firm belief that I have manged to convince at least one rational being of the truth

Temple in the shadows

To start off, I seek refuge in a rather  inapt quotation “When a big tree falls, the ground beneath shakes”. For the ignorant, you are blessed and I shall not try to take away your blessing, for the not so-ignorant I now relate this shame on India to many things that gets overshadowed by monumental occasions or persons or institution. In the context of this blog, the dictionary entry called “institution” reigns.

In the light (or rather shadow) of what happened on 25th of February, one ex-cricketer was deprived of his well deserved sending off.This post is not about him too.

This post is a tribute to my school which celebrated its fiftieth birthday a few days back. For the observant, the url of this post says more about this post than the one hundred words that precede this intermediate. For the benefit  of the lethargic readers, it contains the words  a hundred rupees the monthly fees at my school.As to why the chose the letters of the sentence in the largest font is that somehow for a iitian of the early 2000’s every thing that has contributed to my life academically somehow becomes consigned to a footnote.A glance across my tag-cloud itself screams in disgust at the overbearing presence of KGP/IIT in making who I am. Even this post is tampered with a liberal dose of moments of my life spent in IIT.

It was the year of 1996 that I became a student of Don Bosco Dibrugarh. It was the first year wherein I graduated from wearing shorts in my previous school to trousers. It was the year I bought my cycle, It was the year I first tied the knot of my tie. It was the year I typed my first computer program. It was not the universal Hello World. But back then a Print 10+20 and getting 30 on pressing return in your GW BASIC terminal was  leggg(wait for it)endary.

I did not win my first certificate in this school. But won most of my honour list. Every year we had something called class in action. Full day was spent in social and cultural events. Disposing off all remnants of humility, I shall now boast that in my six-year in my school no body earned as many certificates as I did so these extra-academic adventures were really special for me. Did I tell you, this was the school that killed my stage fright, that taught me to speak in front of any crowd. In my very first year I found myself alone in front of a mic and thousand odd students giving an extempore speech. I also found kind of gradual change in the way I conducted myself during public appearance. For the first year, I was staring at the magnificent ceiling of the auditorium  so that I could escape the glances of  all the eyes fixed on me. By the time I left, i learned to draw strength from the little nods I got from the audience and concentrate only on them. Somehow speaking/singing on stage no longer remained a performance, it became a conversation. I guess it’s now time to say one of the may Thank yous I should say to my school.

Somehow my memories of extra-academics overpowers my memories of academics for my kgpian friends this should be no surprise. A day we always looked forward to was annual arts and science exhibition. This was the ultimate lesson in confidence building. We were a boys school people from girls school and co-ed(LFS 😀 and the likes) came to our school on that day to try to tell us that girls are better. Never to be cowed down, I was one of the guys spearheading the fight in intellect wit and bluffs. Scientific formula of Sodium became (S) to answer of people who were hell-bent of humiliating us :D.

The last year of my school life was my most fulfilling . This was the year I spearheaded the campaign of my school in quizzes and won two of the most prestigious quizzes that year. I was third in two, that’s a different story. But our boys school defeated L.F.S. (the girls school) in all but one. Wow what a celebration we had. In the one quiz I was defeated(3rd), there was no audience to take in pleasure of seeing us loose.

Our school had a hockey ground, a tennis ground, a football ground and table tennis. These are seemingly mundane features but then for a hundred rupees per month, our school defined what token fees is all about. Poor kids were given free lodging and food and tuition in hostel. A separate school used to run in afternoon for the poor kids who could not attend school.At the same time my school was the best that was in town in spite of many things that defied economic sense. For those who disagree, your comments, if any,  shall be deleted.

In the midst of all these, I guess I forgot to tell you that my school was the first to have computers in my town. I saw the huge 5′ floppy drives pasted on the walls of our  computer lab. And yes I worked in computers with only two floppy drives thanks to my school.

I guess that’s all of the unconnected threads of memories I can recollect and rejoice now. And yes a thank you to my school and all who made those six memorable years

A scream across the skies

scream across the skies

Our hearts beat for the one we love said an ancient sage
Nay said the rational sage
It beats to keep us alive
I ask the sages of all ages
How do you live without the one you love.

Where is the beauty promised by beauty
When I long to see only your eyes
What is the joy in all I do
when I long only to see you smile.

How do I lift the veil of mist
To see me in your midst
How do I make you see
All that is me
Is only a prayer to you.

Sugar free stuff and diabetics

sugar free

sweet poison

Having waded through political waters for my first post of the decade, my wandering gypsy mind think its time to write about my experiments with food recommended and forbidden for diabetics.  For those of who don’t know who I am or have turned a blind eye to the  persistently highlighted link on this blog entitled “Who am I”, I am no doctor so wont assault your eyes with jargon or some futuristic script that can’t be understood by most of humanity. I am a type 2 diabetic. The findings in this post is literally the digital representation of my blood on your screen. Whenever I have something suspicious, I usually check my blood sugar before and after having the forbidden apple from the garden of Eden. For those of you who are thinking about applauding my heroic sacrifice of blood, this spot smacks of greed. My long-term plan in life is to publish my findings and earn money :D. Not many people are non-insulin dependent diabetic right from the threshold of adulthood.  So, I definitely will win hands down in the quanta of experimental data.

Like all of my digital tidings, this post too owes one chromosome to a trigger.Recently I cam across some sweets packaged as “diabetic dezires“. Some words are really catchy. For a guy who had sent bundles of nerves of his sweet tooth such promises wake up the polar bears of your nerves to the arctic summer.I gave in and spent some of my hard-earned modern equivalent of ancient salt on it. Usually most of the food that proclaims itself to be for diabetics have their nutritional content published on their package. It’s a common misconception for a blood sugar patient, sweet is the bete noir. The enemy in your food is the calories,fat and the form in which you get the calories. For persons with semi-functional pancreas like mine, fats can be more harmful than sugar.

This company claims to be made for diabetics but the day before i had it my sugar was hovering around 90-110. Although I followed the same routine the next day, my sugar was hovering in 150-160 stuff. Don’t have it.In case you want to indulge in sweet tooth as a diabetic, please buy stuff only if you know the ingredients with calorie content. As for some rule of thumb you can’t usually heat sugar-free stuff, it no longer remain as sweet. I don’t know why but again these are my experimental findings. It is for this reason that you are recommended to add sugar-free pellets before consumption 😀