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Sunday, December 22, 2013

New Year resolution

So, here we are. We are ending another year. Another 365 days gone (almost). We are 1 year removed from the proverbial 'end of the world' (what a bummer!). It's time to start thinking about the next year. Yes, year 2014.

Every year, I take a new year resolution. 23 resolutions later (yes, I started taking new year resolutions at 4! Does that give my age away?), I see that I haven't done much with them. And here I am, about to take another new year resolution. Yes, I know we still have some time left before new year dawns upon us. But I can't help it. I have to think now. Every year I think that I'll break the proverbial shackles and do something new. I haven't yet. So, this time, I want to stay ahead. I want to take a new year resolution early. I want to follow through on it. I want to make sure I stay ahead of time.

Here it is. My new year resolution is: no more resolutions. Enough thinking. It's time for action. It's time for me to catch up to my dreams and ask them what went wrong in the past. No longer will I look out for new year. More than that, I'll cherish every new moment. I'll play by my instincts. I'll take more risks. I'll care more for everything and everyone I love. I'll love everything and everyone I care for. I'll take life as it comes and will not back down from any challenges it throws at me. I will make things happen.

My new year is going to be about every new moment. How about you?

Saturday, November 16, 2013

We'll miss you

We knew this day was coming. We knew it for sometime. We knew that this was it. We knew it in advance. He gave us notice. And we knew when the legend would leave his playground. Despite all that, I couldn't hold back that tear. It was all magic and now it's all a memory.

So finally, 24 years, 200 tests, 463 ODIs, 1 T20I, 34357 International runs, and 200 International wickets (I just realized that) later, Sachin has bid adieu to International cricket. It would be an understatement of epic proportion to say that it was a privilege to see him. To live an era in which not only Sachin existed but dazzled one and all with his talents has been more than just an honor. For any ardent cricket fan, be it any country, he has been the ultimate batsman. He has been the very definition of batsmanship for almost two and a half decades. His statistics have left little doubt that he is made up of champion material. From the time I started watching cricket, he was there. He was competing against the best bowlers in the most alien conditions and was thriving on that. He proved time and again that his talents have no bounds. When time started going against him, he adapted. Even when he had nothing left to prove to anyone, he proved everyone wrong. People started to call for his retirement but he fought on. And even in twilight of his cricket, he was on top. 2011 proved that no bowling attack can handle Sachin when he gets going. His longevity and high performance under the pressure of carrying a billion expectations is for everyone to see.  But today something more important happened.

I heard his retirement speech. And though I've always claimed to be an emotionless brick (not that it matters), I couldn't hold back those emotions that I felt at that time, like so many others across the country. His words were more than words. They seemed sincere. They felt genuine. And for a man who is revered as a god, his words showed the humility of the legend. There is no doubt he'll going down as one of the best batsmen of all time, if not the best. But as a human being, he showed what it means to be level-headed and grateful. His farewell speech showed the side of Sachin which we've always known but never seen publicly, an emotional human being. He has done everything in cricket that was there to be done. 

He's become the first ever sportsperson to receive the highest civilian honor of our country. Well, as everything else has been in our country, this would not be without controversy. Lovers will love and haters will hate. But can you deny the fact that he's exactly what a role-model should be? Bharat Ratna or not, he's been a gem and would always go down as one of the greatest personae of this century. He deserves every bit of accolade he has received. A man who is great, on and off the field. Some are great players, some are great people. He is both a great player and man.  

I heard it on TV (I don't remember who was commentating at that time) that as it was his destiny. Sachin was born to be great and all the stars did everything to align themselves to facilitate that. Cricket as we know would no longer be the same. Sachin was the last of the previous generation of cricket. Whether someone would surpass him is academic, but November 16, 2013, marks the end of an era. Damn it West Indies, we wanted 10 days of him on field, you gave us only 6.  A billion heart skipped a beat after his retirement speech. An it's still in process of sinking in.

Thank you Sachin for everything. We'll miss you on the cricket field. And as the giant screen said, Legends never retire.

      

Friday, October 11, 2013

A true legend

So, here I was talking to my friend about various things that have been going around. As we have become these days, we check our phones regularly (for no apparent reason). Suddenly, my news app flashed the news. Didn't think of it much at that time. After all, it was not something out of ordinary. Yes, someone retired from cricket. What's the big deal? Only later did we start realizing that someone was no ordinary man. That someone was Sachin Tendulkar.

An era has come to an end. One of the greatest ever (if not the greatest) has bid adieu to a sport billions revere as a religion in this country. And that man is revered as a god. Sachin Tendular's retirement does mark the end of not a chapter, but a book. A book filled with amazing memories and painful heartbreaks. His statistics are out there for everyone to see, so I'll not load this piece with any statistics. His stats speak for what he has done. But more important is what he is as a human being.

With success comes responsibilities and he never shied away from them. He shouldered the expectations of over a billion people for almost two and a half decades. Can you imagine the amount of pressure he had been under? Imagine what that pressure can do to a mere mortal. But he not only hung on, he excelled under it. Sachin became synonymous to cricket in India. But despite all that, he remained a humble, down to earth human being. Success has done crazy things to many big names. But here is a man, more successful than so many of the contemporaries, still feet on the ground.

In modern world, controversy creates cash. However, you'd be hard pressed to find a controversy on his name. A true family man, you'd hardly see him outside of cricket. Endorsements and publicity stints aside, this man would be hardly seen out or making headlines outside cricket. You can nothing but admire this man. He has had his share of detractors and haters, which is bound to happen with the amount of publicity he has garnered over the years, but not one person can question his character as a human being.
Never once you might have heard him talking bad or ill about someone. His humanity, composure, calming influence are almost beyond any mortal.

His retirement from the cricket leaves a void which is almost impossible to fill. Sure haters will still hate (which I've already seen on so many message boards and comment sections of news articles). But if you can't acknowledge the greatness of this man, you are just an ignorant person. He's that true role model we all yearn for and who are difficult to come these days. He is once in a lifetime phenomenon that we all were  so blessed to see. Sure, cricket will move on, life will go on and we'll move with it.

Thank you Sachin for being a true role model. Thank you for all the memories. Cricket will never be the same again.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

K

And before I knew it, I had hit send. What did I do? How couldn't I not read it before I sent it? What would she think of it now? And how would I know what she'll think? So many questions, and no answers.

So this was supposed to be a normal conversation between us. Then how could I send that message? Why did I type that in the first place? Things have never been better between us. We were so getting along. And now this? Why did I do this to myself? Why did I do this to her? What would be her reaction now? Will she ever talk to me again? Will she listen to me?

If she does talk to me tomorrow, she's sure to bring this up. What should be my explanation? Was I out of my mind? That I did not think before sending? Would she believe me? Why shouldn't she? I am a good guy. I've never done anything bad to anyone. So i shouldn't be worried, right? So why am I worried? What have I done?
 
This conversation was not supposed to end like this. What was I thinking? Was I thinking at all? Oh god! She's never talking to me again. Should I send another message? She would be expecting me to apologize for this. I should definitely send another message to her. Wait! What if she's infuriated and wouldn't respond? What should I do then? Should I call her instead? Or should I wait for sometime? Should I wait till morning?

She hasn't responded to me yet. She's definitely angry. And I am definitely in a soup. How could I be so foolish? Why didn't I think this through? What can I do? I am so s...........

(And he falls asleep. All because he sent '....k'. How dare he end a conversation with his girlfriend with 'k?'
Statutory Warning: Possible health hazard. Don't try this with your girlfriend.)


This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

Friday, September 20, 2013

I am the Y-generation

I am today's man. I am a no nonsense person.

I can think for myself. I need lesser suggestions and yield more results. I have a vision. I possess the knowledge to fulfill that vision. I stand for what is right. I hate hypocrisy. I long for logic and hate superstitions. I respect the concept of god but I hate using him as a tool to explain my success and my failures. I love my parents but hate being told what to do. I respect my elders but hate them telling me what is right. I need proof for facts otherwise they are just opinions to me. I have an opinion and not afraid to air it.

I love my country but hate the way it is run. I love my schools but hate the way the subjects are taught to me. I love my gadgets and the technology. I have a conscience and know what is right and wrong. I respect traditions but open to new ideas. I respect the concept of religion but hate it dictating terms for me. I want to carve my path on my own terms and would hate to be stopped or hindered by anyone.

I am the Y-generation. I am ageless and my ideas are timeless. I have ethics and I am bound by them. I respect your stand and I understand what you must do. I only expect to be understood in return and not be questioned on everything I do. Tell me what to do and not how to do. I have my flaws but I rather embrace them than hide them. 

I am not perfect and I like it that way.  I may not be everything you hoped for, but I am still the future. And if you give me a chance, I can prove my worth. You may be surprised!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

To love with hate

You buried and you left
your secrets in my skull.
You took away what was mine
and left me in a lull.
You wrecked my haven,
Leaving me in despair
You took away everything I had
Forgetting what we share 

 You forgot what you stood for;
the crisis of the untold
The voice of the voiceless
Now has been sold?
The memories constrained
 And you behold,
What is left of me
And the pieces I hold.

The dead memories and your secrets
have become a part of me
You turned me into what I hated
 I am what you wanted to see.

Take away all your lies
I can't hold them anymore.
 They rip me into shreds
This is what you loved me for?
Release off the harness
You've put me in.
Crack open my skull
Let me dissolve within.

I want to break free
of the shackles I'm in
Just so you know,
I lose, you win.
But remember the wrong
What doesn't kill
Just makes me more strong!



Sunday, August 25, 2013

Yet again!

August 23, 2013. Yet another case. Yet another rape. Yet another outcry. Yet another reminder of what we've become as human beings.

This was a reminder for sure. Reminder of what happened last year. It's been barely 8 months when we had yet another brutal gang-rape. Police is out on search and has nabbed 5 of them already. They will be prosecuted. They may even be punished (hey, it's Indian judiciary system, we never know when the judgement's coming). But, question remains the same. Would that be enough? Can we get rid of these cases ever?

No law, no constitution can guarantee safety, and that is the truth. We have laws against rape, we have laws again murder. In fact, we have laws for and against every crime we can think of. But do they guarantee safety? They don't. Then what will. What can guarantee safety of women, and these kind of cases, the innocents (remember the male colleague who was beaten and tied up at the scene?). Can anything guarantee safety? 

Nothing can guarantee safety more than people's mind. Remember, people who commit these crimes are also part of the same society we live in. Our politicians, our citizens, our celebrities, all of them can only condemn the act. But none of that is going to stop this crime. The only way this crime can ever be curbed is by changing the mindset of the people. What am I talking about?

I was talking to one of our company drivers on our way to work when this news came on the radio. He commented, "This is all girl's fault. They wear all kind of clothes (read skimpy) and go out and then people blame it on the rapist." I wanted to retort in the most aggressive ways, but something stopped me. I do not agree with what he said and will never do. This is not any girl's fault. She has the right to wear what she likes. Everyone has. But it got me thinking about our society.

Our society is conservative by nature. We are in a transition phase. A lot of these changes in our daily lives are new to lot of people. Whether we live in a big metro city, or in a small town, the whole woman liberty concept is new. The 'liberal woman' concept is very new to our society. 

I mean I still hear people gossiping if a girl smokes. Smoking is bad for health, for everyone. But no one gossips when a male does that. However, when a girl does that, people take notice. Not only males, everyone. Same goes for so many other things. And in the same society, we have some of these beasts who cannot resist the temptation and commit such heinous crimes.

It's all in the mind. Our society needs to change. We talk about equality, but we still push for age old norms and look down upon anyone who is slightly different. We talk about liberal views and we still are conservatives. India is not the only country which has these psychopaths and sociopaths, they are everywhere. No country is completely safe. But the difference is the overall mindset here and in those western countries.

Everything would continue to be same. Rapes would continue to happen. Molestations will continue to happen. Girls would continue to be unsafe. Innocents would continue to be unsafe. We would continue to be unsafe. We'll condemn these acts, but would not be able to stop them. Nothing will change till the time we take the responsibility and change our mindset. Otherwise, we'll continue crying on the streets in vain. Crime against women and the weak, innocents would continue happening.

Let's bring some difference. It's all about tolerance and control. Let's educate people who can be. Let's respect women. In fact, let's respect every human being. Remember, live and let live.


 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

The dawn - August 15

At the stroke of midnight,
We saw a light
It was the ray of hope
It saw past our blight

We rejoiced,
We cherished
We forgot
the blemished

We recalled the sacrifices
We forgot the sorrows
We dreamed of a world
Free of all harrows

Everything seemed possible
on that day
The world was our playground
And we were here to stay

It was the beginning of the beginning
the dawn of a new morning,
the rise of hope
and we were ahead, storming

Let's fulfill our destiny
Let's move ahead together
Let's realize our goals
Let's dawn upon the world like a stormy weather.


This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

Sir, do you know me?

Dear MP,

Hello! Sir, do you know me? Yes, me. No? I am common man. Does that ring any bells? You must've seen me somewhere. Yes, definitely.

You must've seen me in the daily local train. Yes, the same red one. I travel in it everyday. Haven't you heard about it? Sometimes bombs go off in them. But I travel in it anyway. What to do? My family needs a bowl of rice to eat everyday. 

Did you see me yesterday at the local vegetable vendor's place? Yes, I go there almost everyday. Yesterday, I went to buy some onions. But guess what. Apparently, I can't afford them. No worries. I'll adjust my daily diet to a 'no onion' diet. Just give me warning every time something becomes unaffordable. 

Are you now able to recognize me? No? Haven't you seen me at one of those fuel stations? Yes, the big one. I go there everyday. You know what though? I receive lesser fuel for the same amount I pay everyday. What? Buy more? I sure will. However, my pay doesn't rise with every hike in fuel prices. But I'll adjust and make sure I don't drive my bike all the time. It is good to walk sometimes, isn't it?

Now you must've recognized me. Yes, the same common man? My neighbor's daughter was harassed on her way to home last night. But don't you worry. We've talked to her and we'll make sure she returns before dark now onwards. We wouldn't want to disturb your police, right? They have to protect more important people, and I understand that.

Is it that difficult to recognize me? Haven't you seen me at one of the bus stands waiting for bus? You must have seen at one of those road side vendors. I asked them what I could get for Rs.12. He answered, "Certainly not a dollar!"  

At least you should know that I pay you. No? I pay you your salary. I pay for your expensive cars. I pay for your big houses. No?

But I know you'd recognize me. Next year. When it'd be my time to vote. Next year you'll come to me. You'll beg in front of me. You'll plead and promise stars to me. You'd do everything to woo me. You'd even be ready to kneel down. You know what. I promise you that next year, you'd not want to face me. 

With love,
Common man


 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Independence day

First of all, happy Independence day. This marked our 67th independence day celebration. We've been free from any foreign rule for 66 years now. So, I'd like to take this moment and congratulate every Indian.

Now, I was thinking (yes, I think too much). What have we done in these 66 years? Where are we? Where would we be 20 years from today?

I do not intend to rant or vent my frustration about what's wrong. I definitely do not want to pose the question 'are we free?' or 'have our politicians ruined our freedom?' I just want to reflect what we've done.

For sure, we are one of those potential superpower countries. We have achieved great things in past 66 years. From being under British rule to being a nuclear power, we've done it all. We have some of the best minds. Our economy is the 9th largest in the world per GDP. Our IT infrastructure is one of the best across the world. Since 1991, when we opened our doors to world, we've grown manifolds. We are touted as one of the youngest countries as well (median age of 24.9) and we continue to attract more foreign investors. We are a popular outsourcing destination, with so many big corporates setting up shop here. We are way better connected than before (we are the third largest market after China and the US for cell phones). We are ready to break the glass ceiling.

Of course, not everything is rosy. While we've grown, we have not been able to solve some of our basic problems. Malnutrition is still high amongst our children. We still import more than we export. We are still a soft target for terrorists. We still can't decide what to do with our neighbors. Our currency is not strong enough. And we have definitely been not able to curb the parasite we call corruption.

Now, I can go on and on about what we've achieved and where the problems lie. But that's not the point. The point is what we are doing as individuals for our country. Are we socially and economically responsible? Are we doing our bit? Are we really utilising our freedom?

We ramble about inefficiency of our system and yet we do not help it. We do not respect our traffic signals. We'd rather pay something to get out of a situation than going through the procedures. We'd rather rant about a politicians stupid comments on social sites than go out and vote. We'd rather blame someone else for a situation than sharing the blame. We'd take every shortcut we can and still blame everything on system.

The system's not perfect, but neither are we. We cannot change our system overnight, but what we can do is change ourselves. We can break the cycle. We can all unite and help each other and ourselves. We are the people. We are the soul of this once glorious nation. It's difficult, but it's not impossible. We can start by doing little things right. It'd be slow, but even a small step in the right direction is good. We should stop underestimating our power and do something for our country and in the process, for ourselves. Remember, we can break that glass ceiling. All we need is that little push from ouselves. Together, we can bring it. We'll write our own destiny.

That's my oath. Happy Independence day!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Break away from myself

Stopped in my path when memories came back
Stopped to think where they've been stacked
Stopped to notice the difference in me
Stopped to understand what I see

I remembered the laughter
I recalled the smiles
I dug out the secrets
Buried under the proverbial files

I found that album
The memoirs of the lost
Where they've been?
Buried under permafrost?

I saw a smile,
Unadulterated, unaltered
The beauty of my past
My perseverance when I faltered

Where have they gone?
How did I let them go?
How I became this?
What has made me so?

I want to be that again
The child in that album
Who danced in the rain
And laughed at every problem

Bring me back to life
So that I can smile again
So that nothing troubles me
And I can dance in the rain

I don't want to be a hostage
Of my own self
I want to break free
And just be myself

Monday, August 12, 2013

B positive

My blood group. In fact, it is the blood group for a lot of people. Okay, no, I am not talkin about blood groups here though.

Our world is more gray than we care to admit. We cannot paint it black and white as we would want, and we know it. And it's okay. We cannot classify everything as good or bad. But what worries me more than anything is we have become so cynical.

I have a small task for everyone (or whoever can do it). Open your local newspaper (or whichever newspaper you read). Then count all the positive and negative stories in that paper. What do you find? Right. Positive stories are far outnumbered by negative stories. Do we really live in a world where poitives are outweighed by negatives so heavily? Why have we become so negative?

Turn to anyone around you. You'll find good and bad in them. But somehow, we only see the bad things. We complain. We outright dismiss ideas. Why? We have problem with everything. Introspect. When was the last time you shared something positive with your peers? Why has it become so difficult for us to be positive?

Answer is within us. These days we are stressed. From our work to our home, everything stresses us out. Positivity is difficult to be found in such stressed environment. And that rubs off on everyone around us. Take a moment out and think. From youth to elderly, everyone's complaining about what's going wrong.

Take a moment and ponder. Look at little children who laugh. Everything's positive and rosy to them. Then what happened to us? When did we become so rigid and headstrong? Questions would always be there. Answers lie within.

Take a moment out of your busy schedule. Smile back at someone who smiles at you. Stop looking for underlying messages. Take people on face value for once. Make things simple for yourself. Thank anyone and everyone who does even a very small thing for you. Connect with nature. Laugh like a child. Stop being cynical. Stop being sarcastic. Joke, and laugh on jokes. Stop being know-it-all for a moment.

Just stop for a moment and be positive. It'll not only make you happy, you may become reason for someone else's smile as well.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

(We) Rise and (You) Fall


You live because I die,

You laugh while our families cry,

You mumble through your speech;

I bleed here while you act a leech



My crimson paints the ground

My body fights through each of their fired round.

They strike without any repercussion

We die without any retribution



The blood we spill goes to waste every time

You stay silent; we don’t worth a dime?

But Mr. Leader, you hear me out

You’re nothing without us, neither is your clout



Don’t bother our dead bodies

We are not alone in this;

Millions stand for us all over,

That’s what we call bliss



We do not need you to stand up for us

Let our bones be buried with respect

And we’ll rise when you fall

Then we’ll have it all perfect


This post is a part of Write Over The Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Those were the days!

Do you remember college? I do. My friends do. Everyone in my circle does. Why do we remember them. Why? What was there?

It might seem cliche but it's really difficult to top your time as student. You might've hated your school or college but you'll never forget those days. For me, those days are fond memories. Those days can't be forgotten. Those days remain close to heart.

Back in the day, we were seen as mischievous crew. And we were. No denying that. We did everything we shouldn't have. We raised hell for our lecturers. We bunked. We flunked. We failed. We passed. We did everything there was to be done. But the best thing that we did at that time, and which was something not everyone liked, was we dreamed.

We dreamed of better future. We dreamed of cool girlfriends. We dreamed of being superheroes. We were unrealistic. We dreamed of time machines. We dreamed rebellion. We dreamed saving the world. We dreamed damsel in distress situations. We dreamed what nobody wanted us to.  How dare we dreamed? But we did it anyway.

We were unorthodox. We made lives hell for others (not in a dangerous way). We created havoc day in, day out. We went to college and hit on girls, and for some weird reason, we all would hit on the same girl. We played cards. We placed bets. We lost some, we won some. We stood together in troubles (mostly created by us). We celebrated together. We cherished moments together. And we dreamed together.

We look back at those moments and smile. We realize now that those days are not coming back. Some of those dreams have fulfilled, some still remain. But the best part is no one can take those days away from us. May be it's nostalgia, but it doesn't change the fact that those were the days! Those were the best days of my life!
  



This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The Pieces

I screamed and shouted
I thought you care
I was scared and routed
I simply watched in dispair
Nothing seemed possible
Everything seemed hollow
What you did to me
was a bitter pill to swallow

You left me in pieces
you left me in tatters
you left me a shadow
But it still matters

It matters that I let you know
All the pieces I have got
are out there to show
You meant something a long time ago
What I have now
is what you'll never know

The pieces are back together
you'll never break me down
Because what I did with those pieces
is what'll never go down



Thursday, July 18, 2013

A trip to childhood

We all know Pavagadh. We all know why it's famous. Recently, we visited the waterfalls nearby. And we were blown away.

A picturesque setup near pavagadh temples, it sucks you in. The trip was nothing less than illuminating. Why? Because it reminded us of what it is like to be a child. Nothing mattered. We forgot our problems. We forgot we were grown ups.

It's not a secret place. Lot of people visit during rains. So what's so special about it? It's not the place itself, but it's the experience it brings. The climb through rocks. The clear downward flowing water. All of these are part of that incredible experience.

This was what makes us alive. This is life!