Thinking into the talk!

21454525-think-and-speech-bubbles-the-dude-x-2-communicating-think-and-speech-bubbles (2)‘Oh pretty woman! The sparkle in your eyes is like the twinkle of stars in the night sky’, serenaded Pritish to Priya in his jubilant baritone. While, ‘The structure of an atom is like a miniature solar system with planet-like electrons orbiting the Sun-like nucleus in closed elliptical paths’ proclaimed a gruff gaudy Rutherford. And ‘If you expect the world to be fair with you because you’re fair to them, its like asking a lion not to eat you because you don’t eat lions’ read a random facebook quote. Now what’s the common string in all three?!

No, don’t go into twinkle of star and atoms undergoing nuclear fusion in the starry kiln, and shake off that image of a pretty woman and a lioness walking that graceful gait. The connection is, well bit more literal, actually more of linguistic. All are analogies. The sparkle in eye to the twinkle of star, and the rest two are homework!

Analogies are a logical tool to enhance the literary repertoire as of the scientific ramble. It’s a connection in similarity. We equate some aspect of something to a similar aspect of another thing, to make a point. Yes, the purpose of analogies is to make a point. And that’s as simple as it gets.

Now my worry is, what kind of point is the point that’s made as with analogy. Try this. Once a friend said something mean to another friend of mine. Well lets strip down the façade. The real is, a girl said something mean to her boyfriend, my friend. And she stormed out. A moment later as when it gleamed on her that she was in wrong, she returns to apologize, but my friend in his momental chagrin blurts out, ‘An egg broken, is broken.’

Now he conveyed a point, that once hurt, it can’t be undone, only maybe forgiven or forgotten. And he livened it with a beautiful analogy of a simple scientific fact, actually more of a common knowledge that one cant put the albumin and yolk back into the broken shell and reseal the egg. (The physics is due to entropy and arrow of time and stuffs.) And there is beauty, impact and a clarity in this way of conveying it, with a crisp subtle simple analogy.

And that’s what analogies and meant for. To explain. To bring clarity to the concept. To convey an idea with simplicity. To gleam insight into something.

Now consider this. I once was dragged to a church by a ‘friend’, and someone was preaching on the mike with lots of gesticulation and tonal modulation, walking around, jumping, waving and shouting hallelujah. He made this analogy. I will cut the long repetitive story short. The gist was, ‘the guy went to a furniture store with his wife to buy a cushion for their sofa set. The lady sits on every cushion there, and it takes her two days to make up her mind which one it is’. Then he goes on to say, ‘if u take so long to pick a single cushion, how long will Jesus take to pick the right cushion (life/love/relationship/job/choice) for you’. I guess, his point was, if life is hard, suck it up cos it only means God is trying him as before the gift of a lifetime.

Now the flaw here was, he uses the analogy not to explain, but to substantiate his point. N that’s exactly what an analogy is not for. Because at the very heart, analogy is in essence a logic applied in a different context. The connection being, the similarity of inference that can be drawn. One should note that the inferences in those two disparate contexts per se exist, and are valid. The purpose of analogy being only to present them together so one may understand the logic of the inference in one context as through other. Its not that on the force of some similarity in context, the inference in one is drawn similar to other. N thus why Rutherford went wrong with his planetary model for structure of atom. But there is more to that story than that.

feature-1And thus, like winter gives way to spring, despair will to hope and happiness, well is pleasing pleasant analogy, but its validity, well, its not definite. But then, we want it to be true. Guess, that’s the one small little flaw in analogies. But then, flaws are good sometimes.

Lets finish this with a brilliant one by the Bard, ‘When beggars die there are no comets seen; the heavens themselves blaze forth the death of princes.’ The point is implicit. And well, sometimes its just well enough to relish a piece of literature than having to dig into its validity and linguistic aptness. Its ok to like, accept and appreciate something at face-value, not always, but some harmless times for sure.

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The Epic Dilemma

images (14)It happens in life that we need face critical situations. Situations wherein, the choice we make assumes importance beyond measure. And being full of life as I am, such situations indeed have graced me often. While each one remains significant in its own accord, one particular incident stands apart, as it saw me verge on a nervous breakdown. And even today, as I look back upon, my heart shudders with primeval fright within. It was… ‘the dilemma at the Café Coffee Day’!

It was a day the Sun did not show up! Its not that there was a very long Solar Eclipse, just that clouds were strewn up in the sky blanketing the rays of the mighty sun from lighting the day. I should have taken clue but I did not believe in omens then. Not that I believe now either! Anyway, I was finished attending the class at college and was riding back home. And it was on Mount Road, close to LIC that I spotter her. Sheefali!

Sheefali was the most enticing and alluring of undergraduates to have ever walked in our college campus. And even in Open category, in mean, considering other such creatures in the City, she was a respectable force to beckon! And needless to say, I had an XXL size crush upon her. Believe me, I would have even let Tyson box me for three rounds to be blessed with an opportunity to have coffee with this beautiful wonderful piece of divine creation!

I braked my vehicle close by and called her out, “Hey! You are Sheefali ryt. Wat’s up?” And well, you know what happened next? The impossible happened! She looked back. She looked back at me!! And adding to that, she opened her mouth and spoke. Just so unbelievable! She said, “I went in to the Higginbothams and well when I came back my car had flat tyres. Have sent my driver to have it repaired! What about you?” She asked again, “Hey dude, what’s up? I asked what about you?”. And she actually had to shake me so as to rouse me from my dream! That small conversation attained the proportions of a nice sweet duet in my dreamy wonderland!!

I said, “Nothing. Going back home. Can I drop you somewhere?”. And when she said, “Sure!”, well I really swooned for a moment. She hopped on and I enquired where that should be. She said, “Anna Nagar”. I had a heartfelt intention to take the longest possible route to there, which being right round the earth! But I was still awaiting my passport, so I settled for the more conventional route. The traffic was quite dense and the noise kept me from conversing with that divine creation on the back seat! Pity that in bike the rear-view mirror doesn’t show the pillion-rider’s face as does in car!!

After about 30 minutes when we were coursing through Anna Nagar, at a red signal opposite the Café Coffee Day I looked at her and asked, with the most genuine of prayers I could have ever conjured in my heart, “How about a cup of coffee?”. And she just smiled and said, “Sure!”. “Wow!”, I took a double take. “God’s definitely showing-off!”.

images (15)I took a U-turn, parked and we two stepped into the posh cool lounge of the Café, with a whiff of coffee making my heart happier still, if at all it were possible! We spotted a comfortable pair of sofa and had self seated. My o my! I was still not believing all this. “I am sitting with the most beautiful girl in the history of my college, and she has just me along to entertain her!”. I was sincerely in bliss. She ordered a cold-coffee with cream and vanilla toppings while I called for my usual, cream with chocolate chips.

She spoke! She spoke to me! And she spoke tender, with such a sweet poise! Does she like me! Well for someone for whom it was unbelievable to even behold this lady looking back to his call, this would be just a revolting thought, but it did seem true. She had that smile, the kind of smile that is usually pasted on the lips of a lady when she likes a guy and wants to convey that she likes his company. And the lady this time was Sheefali and the guy was me! “How many guys would have had been at my place till date”, I thought!

Well actually Sheefali was notorious at snubbing any and every guy who approached her! She was uniquely notorious for that. And this I feel was something that further adder to her fan-fare. The more difficult the deal is, the more you get to value it! And above all was her enigmatic silence about self. People knew very little about her. In fact, I must be among the few guys to know where her house was. And today, this lady, an incidental company was opening self to me, giving me that charming smile and making me feel great of her company!

I was quite puzzled! But then there is a saying that never think when you can actually have fun with what you are doing! So I kept my side of the train running on rail. And it was a whole hour-and-a-half later when with the sky dimming outside we felt we need moving! My mom would be concerned about what happened to her innocent he-knows-nothing-about-the-world lad! So we had the waiter get us the bill.

And it was then it stroke me that my purse was empty! Well not completely empty, it still had 6 rupees and 50 paise in it! But that was falling short of the bill at the Café!! But then, I can’t have my first date, I mean, first date with this wonderful lady(!!) end on such a drab note. I needed to do something, and do that fast!

I gave her a smile and picked up my phone, feigning to have got a call. I got up and mocking bad-connection-inside frustration, walked about to buy self time. I went up the door and walked out, thinking what to do! I just needed to pay the bill, and drop the lady home, sealing this lovely lively and wonderful evening with a promise of many more such!! But the money! I just needed a couple of paper notes with Mr. Gandhi on!  I was sweating!! God, show me a way! Give me a pass!

And it was during this moment of what-to-do what-not-to that I saw Betty walking across! I felt a bolt strike me!! She was so so so beautiful! She was my high-school cursh, and definitely the most beautiful wonderful divine creation to walk the grounds of my school! I waved to her and she took a moment to recognise but when she did, she ran to me and we embraced!

happy-couple
I asked were she was going and she said to PVR. Her car was parked down the lane. And she said, “What will you take to come along mate!”. It would have taken nothing even without the wink that she beamed along, but it did make my ear flush red!!

I let the whole world behind! Past is past! Let bygone be bygone! And I messaged Sheefali, “Emergency case at ward! Need to go. See you tomorrow dear! Hope you understand!!”. Praise the Lord!!

AMICABLE HAPPENINGS..

Life is intricate, and the life of each one is unique. This life involving person and people around is a wonderful wonderment to behold. I often puzzle self that in spite of the huge multitude of words that constitute the vocabulary of various languages, despite the many dramatic gestures that we can depict and in stark disproportion to the quantity of time, it’s but little moments of few simplistic words stated with the faintest streaks of emotion, the subtleties in our life, that gleam aglow at the end of the day, and possibly, even at the fag end of our lives’.

It was that quiet time of the day when afternoon makes way for the evening. The college canteen, one of the most eventful and also heartful retreats for a student was feebly populated. Seated on a table, alone was she. That fair, gracious, resplendent lady, in a splendid unicolor attire, staring blankly into an empty cup of coffee. And she wasn’t aware of the footsteps that grew louder as they paced nearer.

angry_couple_at_table-2.s300x300The human gait speaks a million if you notice. We are almost never conscious of our gait, and thus we never condition it, i.e. fake it discordant with our inner self. And from the guys gait, or was he a gentleman(!!), anyway, the hesitancy of his steps meant that he was expecting something not very pleasant, while the firmness of the tap indicated that he needed to behold whatever was to befall.

He comes down to the immediate vicinity of our lady and endeavours in a friendly voice, with a mocking dash of honour, “Do you mind if I share your company?” The lady’s lips quivered. Her eyes had an expression of disdain as she spits in an impersonal tone, “As if you will walk away if I say a ‘yes’…”. The guy did not flinch. May be he had this anticipated. He let a long uneasy second tick and then replied, “Then I shall take that for a ‘no’… ” and sits beside.

He places his bag down and sets his hand on the table. He then calls out the waiter. All this while taking care not to meet the lady’s contemptuous gaze. He then looks into those angry blaming, but heavenly white lovely eyes and asks, “Shall I order you a coffee …”, but even before he could complete she spits, “I don’t like coffee.” The guy gives a stupefied look. He has known her for sometime and coffee was one of the two things that occupied the top slot in her ‘like’s’… his mind blinked the thought of the other thing … but he did not allow self complete that thought and asked, “Since when?”. She spat, “Since now. Get me tea.”

Our guy knows more than well not to kindle a lady red with anger and annoyance. He just makes the order to the timid waiter, pity in India we don’t have many waitresses…, anyway, the beautiful company, haan, and then turns to her. Neither speak nothing. Fearing that if the silence is to be broken by her she would drag the conversation to anywhere, though he very well knew where that anywhere was to be, thus gulps his pride and himself endeavours, “Did today’s class on Anaesthetics make sense to you. I felt it to be sort of fragmentary and the amount of details overwhelming.” As he finished, he sort of feels scared.

For the lady who had been just grim and stingy with anger till now went red, she flared and had it not been for the waiter who returned with the coffee and tea, he was sure she would have hit him hard! But then, as if going off his mind, he asks the waiter to drop an extra cube of sugar into madam’s tea. She says ‘No’. The guy just takes his time to be bad, granted, and awaits as she replies, well again spits actually, “I stopped having extra sugar since yesterday afternoon.”

Now our guy is aghast. Plainly, has had enough. He fumes, “Now what’s it with yesterday?” As if just awaiting the moment she sneers with calm contempt, “As if you Mr. don’t know what I mean.” He shoots quick, “If its because I did not tuck my shirt in then do forgive me for that Your Gracious Honour, I could not find my belt…”, while she cuts him short, “To hell with your belt and your shirt, what’s between you and Akansha?”.

He knew more than well this was to be, but then he feigns innocence and hurt. He needs to, that’s how it works. He gives it some time. He zooms his eyes away, from her expansive speckless face and looks out at nothing. This is to mean the guy is sorry and its supposed to make the girl feel a tinge of guilt for having brought his, I mean, this guy’s mood down!

He lets a few more moments to tick. Actually letting that guilt some more time to soak in. Then he says, “It was nothing”. This is the best answer tested time and again by generations. If you straightly negate, then you are in for an extended session of heated arguments, while if you go flat and say, “so what”, then you are in for a few teary   moments of blame and fuss. The best way out is to say that you agree to it that it wasn’t all fair, but at the same time giving a hint of your righteousness by saying it wasn’t supposed to mean anything.

Now the girl knows that her guy stands at the threshold of tumultuous breakdown. One wrong step and she would be in for really cold scolds and the target for a guy’s bad mood. Actually guys could be real dangerous in a bad mood…! She now shifts a gear down, and with a more warm voice, in a tone that is no more accusing but concerned, asks, “You said to me that you don’t like her. And you also promised to me that you won’t go about asking beautiful girls for coffee, right…?”

The guy already has the answer in his mind, “It was completely incidental. I was sitting in here, and she herself came and sat beside. How can I say ‘no’? If there’s an empty chair, every student of this college has a right to sit on it right! And then she started talking about the fight she is having with her mom at home and that Ashish has asked her for a movie the coming weekend and that she has said yes.”

260620121474-001Now the second half of the last statement means more to our lady than the rest of the whole explanation. Though the fact that our guy means no more to Akansha is sort of discrediting to himself, but its all the more reassuring to his, I mean this, lady.

Now its time for second silence. The girl is feeling sorry for all this drama she created and the guy is having his time. Now the ball is in his court. And he more than well knows how to make the most of it.

It a voice that’s completely naïve to the row that had just occurred, its for the guy to forget, read it forgive, for the girl will never on earth asks a ‘sorry’, tells her, “Shall we go to the vantage point atop the hill at St. Thomas Mount this weekend?”

Considering what had passed and the fact that she had been complaining and stingy, and that our guy had been gracious enough to be calm and ‘forgetting’, she can’t but say a ‘yes’ to this offer. Then before they leave, he asks and the girl more than happily pays the bill. She more than deserves some punishment for the row right!

And let come the weekend, given that another apparent fight doesn’t flare up, they go to the vantage point and have a good time together.

Really, I created these men, and these women. But then, seeing them work about, live, fight and reconcile, it’s all a great and involving experience for me to watch, high up above the clouds, seated on my throne in the heaven!

Cognitive Bias..

What do you do when you got a bad cold?! You want to go out but the malaise keeps you home, you want to read a few more chapters in that book ‘shadows of the mind’ by Roger Penrose but your eyes go teary and bleary as you try to focus on the page, your nose’s red and running in torrents, your throat ruined and starts feeling like sandpaper everytime you swallow and not to miss the unnerving pain that all of a sudden makes you aware of the many muscles (howsoever atrophied!) present in your body?!

 So, what do you do? Wel, i think. And also indulge in the pleasant task of writing. There is no better balm to a sick body than a busy mind. So whats rollicking in my mindspace now? Well, heard of something called Motivated Reasoning and Introspective Illusion?! No, yes, either way am going to string couple sentences about either. Both are psych concepts, but not essentially pathologic. We are guilty of falling preys to them every now and then on a daily basis!

images (7)So lets begin with the lesser of the two evils! Motivated reasoning…now whats it? Wel the theory is simple. “You implicitly decide about something, anything, and retrospectively substantiate your decision with many good reasons.” Its where you having a motivation towards a particular decision, and that makes a mockery out of the rational reasoning that you may otherwise have performed . This is no standard definition, but should serve for our purpose here.

Lets dig a bit more into this concept. We are making decisions all time all day. We base them on ‘the spurt of the moment’, ie, as how we ‘feel’ as about it at that moment. And in certain situations, we reason to figure out a right decision. We seek to optimise for these more important ones. Its this latter that i intend to deal with. It occurs, as quite often, that the reasoning we do to arrive at the decision is glaringly flawed. The flaw is in the form of a subtle bias.(yes, the flaw is glaring, but the bias subtle!)

We ‘want’ a particular decision. Why?… well who care! We just want it. But our mind often needs a rationale as about why we want it. So we give our self reasons as to why that decision, say A, is better than the other, say B. We give to selves all the points in favor of A, and against B. There may still be a contentious few who will also include points anti-A and pro-B, but since you have already set your mind on A, these are numerically few. And even on those rare occasion where the number of reasons for-against A and for-against B are numerically equal, there is still the quanta of significance that we attach to each reason that need be considered. This particular task is far from being rational. And why, because we freaking-dont-know how to do it?! We dont know how to annote weightage to each reason based on its significance. We havnt got the right tool in the form of rigorous mathematical models to annote points of weightage. Its very difficult and equally ambiguous to do such stuffs.  And wel, little do we even care! Thus, we bias it towards the ‘pre-set’ decision.

INTROSPECTION STUDY ISo that’s the end of the story. You decide upon something. Implicitly! Just because you feel so. And in a sincere ploy, give self reasons, for the sake of the stern rationalist within you, that why that decision is right, good, proper and the IT! So it forms a cognitive bias, ie, a flaw in the rational thought process. And the root for the flaw is motivation. Thus the crisp title, Motivated Reasoning. And what can you do about it, wel Nothing! The most sane thing to do would seem to strip the motivation away, but i wonder how that could be done. If you know better, be my guest!

Lets pick on the next. Introspective Illusion. Its something i found quite very interesting. Its a thought that occurred to me, but guess am not the only one, for there are pages online about the same!

Now what is Introspective Illusion?! And how does it form a Cognitive bias?!

Who’s your favourite actor or actress?!… no, dont read on. Pick one… got it, sure right, do not try cheating!… Ok now why do you like him/her?! Why is he your favourite?! … Some of you may blink, while else may give a handful of handsome (or pretty) reasons. If you blinked, you made my case easier, but if you are the latter, then how sure are you that the reasons that you gave are ‘indeed THE reason’ why the guy/gal is your favourite?! If you think hard, you may be able to find quite the same qualities in quite few other guys/girls in cinema who also fill the slot but arent your favourite!

This is not restricted to this particular scenario. Its more pervasive. So pervasive that all questions that involve introspection, yes, ALL questions of introspection, are susceptible to this bias. Why you like a particular dish? Why you like that restaurant? Why you like that particular girl/guy from your long list of admirers (note, his/her smell may have something to do about it. Pheromones. Just a research query!)? Wel, carrying on, why you like some particular movie? Book? Color? Painting? Poem? The list can be extended quite endlessly. Guess you would have guessed it ages ago!

There are two counter arguments that may be made here. One, that there is no reason to it! Its flat point-blank just it. I like paneer-butter masala (yes i do!), and i just like it. I dont have a reason as for it and i dont care. Very wel, it possibly could be true. But this in no way harms the case that am presenting (nor the paneer-butter masala).  The second could be that we are making the pick based on some implicit calculation that we are finding difficult to figure out. Thus, though am not sure why i picked say Ileana (good aint she, in acting i mean!), but am perfectly sure she is the One!

Now coming back to the case. I said the first counter-point doesnt harm the case and as about the second, it is the case! We dont know whats brewing inside us! We know the result, but not the factors and the processes that worked upon it to give the result. Because there could be many factors, standing quite behind the scene and hidden from our purview, which go into making of the pick, but when after having made the pick amasked as about why i made it, its not imperative that i may succeed in tracking the pick back througimages (9)h the processes to all the factors that got me choosing it. Imperative, wel, in actuality, its not even remotely possible (leave alone probable). Maybe i may be able to tell you a handful of factors from the repertoire, but its not necessary that i may be able to cover them all. And actually, there is no way to say even the handful of factors you figured out are what indeed went into the deciding or rather they are simply what you want to have been the factors to have consequented the decision. Leave alone maybe, we quite absolutely are not equipped to figure such things out. So though you maybe so sure that it definitely was her ambition, discipline, manners, sweetness, blah blah blah, that got you interested, you never know, it could after all have been that pair of long legs!

So now let me make the very audacious claim! Introspection is a farce. I could be wrong, i could be right. Neither can say based on theory alone. But dear me, studies, yes, of the likes that insomniac men (and women) of science do along the lines of double-blind randomised-control-trial was done, and it was figured out that we dont know why we like something or someone! We may though very readily furnish an explanation for the case, it perfectly and absolutely is far far far from truth! In the end, we just dont know what we are! Who cares!

The Kid’s Duel

6_10_hyper_boy_400x464The story that follows relates to me. Well not exactly the 6’1” me, but the 3’2” me. Confused!! Well it’s an event from the sweet little childhood of mine (yeah, those lovely days when even as a male child you had the freedom to wear pink, without any societal hue and cry!!).

As a matter of fact, instances from the earliest days of our life, mindless as they seem, inadvertently happen to be among the most interesting of reads. Well am not going to hurt my pride by going far back as to the days when I would wear diapers!! So lets fast forward a bit, at say 2x speed to a hot scorching summer noon some 18 years before today, that is, when I was, say two years young and still the centre of attraction of all girls in town. Dunno why these virtues wear off with age!

Anyway, lets focus now. It was a noon when I was left alone but for my fat sweet story-telling granny. But I would not forgive her, you know, in the whole five to six years of my childhood, never did she tell me one proper A rated story! All silly kiddish U/A story with fox that would steal the crow’s vadaai!! Anyway, as they say, to err is human but to forgive…  divine! So grandma, may your soul up there, hopefully in heaven, rest in peace under my blessings! Though then, she was still a sweet walking talking cooking dear person.

That day, she was alone at home at that village of mine, where gobar-gas plants used to supply gas for stove and they used to milk cows under the palm-leaved sheds. I was there guarding her! Old as she may be, but she was one sweet hottie! So she was lying on the cot in the living room of that two roomed shack, and I was playing with tamarind-seeds. Throw one seed up, pat the floor, and catch the seeds as they are on their way back!! Demands exquisite knowledge of kinematics (for my medical friends, its that branch of physics that deals with study of moving objects!!).

Now coming to the matter, there was a hustle in the kitchen as a kitten was repeatedly stalking in and out. My granny got disturbed and asked me if I could remove the cat from there. I geared up. It was a small furry creature with a white coat and stripes of chocolate brown… tasty haan! But I had more reign on my senses then!! I searched around to take an account of the weapons I had and tried to gauge it against the given mission.

I thought of throwing utensils first, but it would create one heck of a noise. TheCharacterizing-Uncertainty-SWIRL-graphicn thought about the knife and spoon, but there was only one spoon, my dear plastic soup-stick and I wouldn’t part with that and as for knife, I fear it since it sliced my finger once while I tried chopping a raw mango. After much search, finally I settled on a gunny bag. In a farmers family, such things come handy. And I dashed behind the cat. It was a thrilling kid-kitten chase, believe me, still better than the cat-rat chase. And as always happens, the hero wins. Here if you are smart enough should be able to guess, the hero is… me! I got the kitten cornered and pounced did I over it, with the bag wide open.

Then its such a time that we don’t fear much. I did not care about its claws or teeth or even the hiss it made. It just made the whole duel more fun. And with it in the bag I beamed a big broad smile. I won! But now there remained one more task, to get rid of it. I conjured up all equations and formulae I knew and tried to feed in the available data, but no output could I gleam to this great grave problem. After much thought and debate with self, I thought, the wide open well beside, has straight walls. If I fall, I couldn’t climb up. Applying the same to the kitten, neither would it and thus problem optimally solved.

Thus down into the well did go the kitty and I returned home with the pride of a knight having saved the kingdom from the enemy army! Where’s my sweetheart with rose in hand awaiting my homecoming…! Oops wells that’s a different timeline. Well I returned back to home and told granny the works done. And in her half slumber, she nodded accent. No appreciations though. Well as kids we never needed one right. We did just for the thrill of it!

Thus I got busy again with my tamarind-seeds and other stuffs. And it was by eve that day that I got a big bad thrashing. The kitten, drowned as you may presume, was fished with a bucket by my uncle and I got such a bad scolding that I slept refusing food. If not appreciating, at least don’t scold me na! I just did what was told!! But when has the world of man been just!!

cute_kitten-wideAnd the next day morning the whole of yesterday was just a dream. I ate enough to compensate for the night before and all fell back to routine. That incident did not seem at all to mean anything except that throwing cats into well brings real bad scolding. Days passed, I grew taller, more mature and more handsome (wish, so dearly I wished!!). And somewhere in my fifth or sixth grade, that incident all of a sudden came to my mind. The thought this time made me shudder. The kitten, drowned, dead, fetched out the well gleamed before my eyes and I felt my heart heavy with sadness. I felt sorry for the kitten. I felt guilty for having killed it. I cried alone. And it was a day I understood, never hurt a life, knowingly or unknowingly!

Really life is an awesome teacher, said some great man (funny all pithy wise sayings are said only by men!!). And well, I would rather make a correction in it. Though it teaches, we learn at our own proper time. And after having read this wonderful account from my dear childhood, if any girl wants to have coffee with me (sorry guys, am not gay!), you are always welcome!!

The First Post… well its My Speech!.. well on Me of course!!

IMG_20140417_044529Friends, foes, and my dear Mr. Toastmaster whom am still debating to count as which, a very exciting afternoon.

On this calming cold day of winter solstice, I first thank you all for gathering together and giving me this singular opportunity to unabashedly boast myself for an unbroken 2 long minutes. So without further adieu, here’s the me!

At 6’1’’, and weighing a good 76 kilos, the first impression that people form of me is their dreamy tall, dark, and handsome Prince Charming. But regrettably, and I guess fortunate for them all, I have shamelessly caused most if not all of those dreams to go off in a puff of sulphuric smoke. Am complex, all my relationships have been complicated, I love coffee and think Deepika Padukone is cute.

I was born in the Agra, the city of tragic love, have lived and studied at Assam, Bangalore, Agra, Nagpur, Orissa and Chennai. And trust me when I say, joining theses places on the map doesn’t bring out the outline of Monalisa. I have tried it. As for this nomadic existence, well it has been the courtesy of the Govt of India’s cunning design to frequently transfer Defence officials, including my dad at Air Force, so that they don’t gather popular opinion of the locals and cause a coup. And there scheme has worked so far.

Dad flies planes, in addition to hoarding degrees which includes a bachelors in science, one in law, a masters in business admin and a remorseless phD. As for my mom, well guess she lost her mind the day she ran away from her family to marry dad at the Registrar’s office and is yet to regain it. She is an engineer cum lawyer and my home is a veritable bedlam of legal rebuttal and repartee. Believe me, they quote IPC sections when they argue with words darting between kitchen and dining room clashing right in front of my own sorry room!

But that’s not it. I got a genius brother, now at IIT, handsome, brainy, funny, a breathing image of my legend and wants to be a theoretical physicist some day. And well let me quip it before I forget, I want to be a researcher in cognitive neuroscience, and figure out how the brain works! My world is incomplete without my wonderful pet, Mu, yes the greek letter mu, my dog, a bitch actually, a Ripley’s believe it or not cross between a pomerean and a Labrador!

Let me be immodest enough to add that I am a born leader. I indeed am! I have been my class captain all through my school, school captain in high school, and continued the tradition into college where was the student representative. I love authority! Or as Alan Shore puts it in Boston Legal, ‘am slut for authority’! And I quite remained in the forefront of academics partly cos I like to know things, and partly spurred by this same hedonistic pleasure of being an authority figure in what I do, where I do.

When I meet someone, am acutely interested in knowing what the person is interested. Shared interests form a great starting point for all happenings. So here is what I do with my time. I got quite a variegated list. I basically love outdoors. I cherish the thrill of trekking through forests and mountains, and in particular am fond of doing that alone. The danger adding to the thrill. I go skating, both in-line and roller. I play basketball and am in my college team. I put my pen to paper once in a while to write something remotely creative. I love books. I love all genres but for horror and mysticism. While I readily read any book that crosses my hand, Ayn Rand, Dan Brown, Thomas Hardy, O Henry and Anton Chekov are in my look-out-for list. And something about Ayn Rand, had she been alive, given her brains, I would have married her any day, well of course, presuming she consents, which is quite only a formality given its me the other end of the bargain. I seriously think there is nothing sexier than a woman with great brains, except one with great brains and long legs! But lets not side-track. Movies, am a killer for movies. Every Friday is my weekly pilgrimage to PVR, my favorite theatre. And I think Mr. Nobody, a Belgian cross-genre drama with a multi-linear narrative is the greatest piece of celluloid till date. I also take time to go swimming. And archery, well I have completed my Beginner’s course and am starting with Professional. And I would be leaving a huge void of me if I don’t mention driving. I love long drives. Guess it’s the bug of going places from dad that I caught up. Plus stargazing through my telescope, and growing hair on my head also fall within my interests. Gym, yes, I go there once every other week!

That should be about it I guess.

And let me just add in the passing, that am a doctor. Yes the one that hangs a steth round his neck, wears a boring white coat and treats people. And I got trained in this science as is an art at Madras Medical College, the second oldest college in India, that’s tied with the oldest hospital, Rajiv Gandhi Govt General Hospital, of the country, both sited at the heart of Chennai.

Let me conclude on  a philosophical note. All great speakers do, thus. I mean like, either way, nevermind. So yes, the philosophical bit. What a person is, needn’t be how he portrays himself.

All right then. Thanks for being such tolerant audience. U have been adorable! Now heave that deep sigh of relief you have been holding up right for such long. So long then. Good day good people!