Thursday, January 31, 2008

Try This...

The ability to live in the present, right now, in the instant, is a spiritual power, reflecting the awakening of the soul and requiring a sub-conscious control of the mind. The mind lives in the past, and the mind tries to live in the future. But when you quiet your mind, you live in the present. You are living within your soul, or the higher state of your mind which is undisturbed by the things of time. The simple formula for attaining the eternal now, is affirming to yourself "I am alright, right now", "Just this instant, I am alright". Let this feelingpermeate deeply in the mind, it be a shock to the disturbed part of your mind, it will not only be shocked, it will be shattered out of its disturbance when you declare the truth that you are all right in the eternal now. This abidance in the eternal now, lifts you to a higher state of consciousness above fears, worries and doubts . - H.H. Sri Sivaya Subramuniaswami

This is quite what Eckhart Tolle advocates in the "The Power of Now"

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Boss' Birthday!

God. Trust me. This one made me laugh out so loud - and uncontrollably so - that I suspect my colleagues will conclude once for all that they were right in their initial assumptions about my reckless insanity. God. This is a gem of a 'story'. Hahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.


Reading this book over the weekend put me in a mood to pen this poem. The first four lines are directly inspired by the book. The rest just followed.

Close your eyes for a minute or two,
And explore the truth deep within you!
Discard the ego and all the negativity,
Hold on to your real spirit and creativity!

Optimism and hope never killed anyone...
They give you all the fuel required for life's run!
Love, laugh and learn everyday of your life,
And watch the dissolving sorrow and strife!
Accept and enjoy life as it comes...
Or do something to even out the humps!
Be a simple and happy soul...
Or reach out for that noble world-changing goal!

Wearing that nice smile on your face,
Will not only take you through every phase!
But transform the lives of people around you...
These are but simple things that form life's glue.
These are but some of life's sweet and simple clues,
For leading a life of purpose and many beautiful hues!

Friday, January 25, 2008

A New Earth...

Reading Eckhart Tolle's A New Earth now. Thought-provoking or maybe I should say awareness-provoking. Covered a couple of chapters so far. Plan to share passages that appeal to me once I finish the book. It is likely to shake you up a little even if you're the kind who is somewhat exposed to spiritual writings.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Are you OOF or WOOF?

I made up something during an idle conversation with a friend, yesterday. A wise-crack, people sometimes call such things. Okay. Agreed. Maybe a not-so-wise-crack in this case. ;)

The friend had set her Out of Office Reply - OOF - on as she was in a marathon meeting. It just occurred to me that if dogs were to use Office Software, they'd rather call it WOOF. And if you're a person who is very particular about acronyms and would prefer that every alphabet does stand for something sensible, then WOOF could be Way Out of Office. What? If you're a dog-lover, I am sure you will not object to this post and will not label it as another one of those nonsensical posts. Woof! Woof! :-)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Where is the world (bank) going?

This is what the world (bank) is like. Sigh.

Bill Brilliant/Wonderful Watterson

If you're a regular here and come here for reasons that I would ideally like people to come here for, then I guarantee you that you'll thank me profusely for this link.

What an awesome speech. No different from all his other speeches/writings. I admire this man from the bottom of my heart. What talent, what an attitude, what an approach towards life, what self-confidence, what values, what sincerity, what honesty, what insight, what an inspiration! And of course, what awesome 'work'! :-)

To some people, his attitude and approach towards life might border on the selfish but that's most certainly not the case. People who stick to their values are almost always misunderstood in this ruthless world. Bill simply stands for his values and is perhaps not diplomatic about the way he deals with conflicts on this front.

It's clear that he's gone through quite a struggle in his life before achieving whatever he has. He still is misunderstood by people. But he remains what he is irrespective of what has happened or is happening to him. But it's not a battle between him and the rest of the world. There are some people who think alike or at least strive to think alike and thus the existence of a huge fan-following. Most importantly, he is happy with himself. He made it big and that's, fortunately, a rare sign of the existence of justice and sanity in the world. There are probably many more people like him who are though unsung heroes who did not really make it 'big' but what's important is that they mostly died happy or are happy (why kill all of them poor things? ;P)

Sometimes, I end up thinking that life in an organization can be no different from what the organization plans/wants it to be like, however much I try to change things or make a difference. The focus will be on money and short-term profits alone. Some aspects of an organization allow for genuine - meaningful - creativity, passion and positive impact on the society and you're lucky if you've been able to find some leg-room in such areas of the business. Otherwise, reading Bill's writings (some direct and some via Calvin and Hobbes) undoubtedly gives hope to those that want to go beyond mundane (or should I say mindless) money-making. You can do what you want to genuinely do, be happy and maybe make it 'big' and influence others positively too.

PS: While on Bill, a recent Calvin-statement that I came across made me smile thoughtfully "Nothing seems to change everyday but one day, all of a sudden, everything is different" I think I got it verbatim....but there may be a slight difference in the usage of the words. Will double-check soon...

Copying the full speech out here just in case the other Blog link decides to change or disappear...

SOME THOUGHTS ON THE REAL WORLD BY ONE WHO GLIMPSED IT AND FLED- Bill Watterson, Kenyon College Commencement,May 20, 1990

I have a recurring dream about Kenyon. In it, I'm walking to the po st office on the way to my first class at the start of the school year. Suddenly it occurs to me that I don't have my schedule memorized, and I'm not sure which classes I'm taking, or where exactly I'm supposed to be going. As I walk up the steps to the post office, I realize I don't have my box key, and in fact, I can't remember what my box number is. I'm certain that everyone I know has written me a letter, but I can't get them. I get more flustered and annoyed by the minute. I head back to Middle Path, racking my brains and asking myself, "How many more years until I graduate? ...Wait, didn't I graduate already?? How old AM I?" Then I wake up.

Experience is food for the brain. And four years at Kenyon is a rich meal. I suppose it should be no surprise that your brains will probably burp up Kenyon for a long time. And I think the reason I keep having the dream is because its central image is a metaphor for a good part of life: that is, not knowing where you're going or what you're doing.

I graduated exactly ten years ago. That doesn't give me a great deal of experience to speak from, but I'm emboldened by the fact that I can't remember a bit of MY commencement, and I trust that in half an hour, you won't remember of yours either.

In the middle of my sophomore year at Kenyon, I decided to paint a copy of Michelangelo's "Creation of Adam" from the Sistine Chapel on the ceiling of my dorm room. By standing on a chair, I could reach the ceiling, and I taped off a section, made a grid, and started to copy the picture from my art history book.
Working with your arm over your head is hard work, so a few of my more ingenious friends rigged up a scaffold for me by stacking two chairs on my bed, and laying the table from the hall lounge across the chairs and over to the top of my closet. By climbing up onto my bed and up the chairs, I could hoist myself onto the table, and lie in relative comfort two feet under my painting. My roommate would then hand up my paints, and I could work for several hours at a stretch.

The picture took me months to do, and in fact, I didn't finish the work until very near the end of the school year. I wasn't much of a painter then, but what the work lacked in color sense and technical flourish, it gained in the incongruity of having a High Renaissance masterpiece in a college dorm that had the unmistakable odor of old beer cans and older laundry.

The painting lent an air of cosmic grandeur to my room, and it seemed to put life into a larger perspective. Those boring, flowery English poets didn't seem quite so important, when right above my head God was transmitting the spark of life to man.

My friends and I liked the finished painting so much in fact, that we decided I should ask permission to do it. As you might expect, the housing director was curious to know why I wanted to paint this elaborate picture on my ceiling a few weeks before school let out. Well, you don't get to be a sophomore at Kenyon without learning how to fabricate ideas you never had, but I guess it was obvious that my idea was being proposed retroactively. It ended up that I was allowed to paint the picture, so long as I painted over it and returned the ceiling to normal at the end of the year. And that's what I did.

Despite the futility of the whole episode, my fondest memories of college are times like these, where things were done out of some inexplicable inner imperative, rather than because the work was demanded. Clearly, I never spent as much time or work on any authorized art project, or any poli sci paper, as I spent on this one act of vandalism.

It's surprising how hard we'll work when the work is done just for ourselves. And with all due respect to John Stuart Mill, maybe utilitarianism is overrated. If I've learned one thing from being a cartoonist, it's how important playing is to creativity and happiness. My job is essentially to come up with 365 ideas a year.If you ever want to find out just how uninteresting you really are, get a job where the quality and frequency of your thoughts determine your livelihood. I've found that the only way I can keep writing every day, year after year, is to let my mind wander into new territories. To do that, I've had to cultivate a kind of mental playfulness.
We're not really taught how to recreate constructively. We need to do more than find diversions; we need to restore and expand ourselves. Our idea of relaxing is all too often to plop down in front of the television set and let its pandering idiocy liquefy our brains. Shutting off the thought process is not rejuvenating; the mind is like a car battery-it recharges by running.You may be surprised to find how quickly daily routine and the demands of "just getting by: absorb your waking hours.

You may be surprised to find how quickly you start to see your politics and religion become matters of habit rather than thought and inquiry. You may be surprised to find how quickly you start to see your life in terms of other people's expectations rather than issues. You may be surprised to find out how quickly reading a good book sounds like a luxury.

At school, new ideas are thrust at you every day. Out in the world, you'll have to find the inner motivation to search for new ideas on your own. With any luck at all, you'll never need to take an idea and squeeze a punchline out of it, but as bright, creative people, you'll be called upon to generate ideas and solutions all your lives. Letting your mind play is the best way to solve problems.For me, it's been liberating to put myself in the mind of a fictitious six year-old each day, and rediscover my own curiosity. I've been amazed at how one ideas leads to others if I allow my mind to play and wander. I know a lot about dinosaurs now, and the information has helped me out of quite a few deadlines.A playful mind is inquisitive, and learning is fun. If you indulge your natural curiosity and retain a sense of fun in new experience, I think you'll find it functions as a sort of shock absorber for the bumpy road ahead. So, what's it like in the real world? Well, the food is better, but beyond that, I don't recommend it.

I don't look back on my first few years out of school with much affection, and if I could have talked to you six months ago, I'd have encouraged you all to flunk some classes and postpone this moment as long as possible. But now it's too late.Unfortunately, that was all the advice I really had. When I was sitting where you are, I was one of the lucky few who had a cushy job waiting for me. I'd drawn political cartoons for the Collegian for four years, and the Cincinnati Post had hired me as an editorial cartoonist. All my friends were either dreading the infamous first year of law school, or despondent about their chances of convincing anyone that a history degree had any real application outside of academia.

Boy, was I smug.

As it turned out, my editor instantly regretted his decision to hire me. By the end of the summer, I'd been given notice; by the beginning of winter, I was in an unemployment line; and by the end of my first year away from Kenyon, I was broke and living with my parents again. You can imagine how upset my dad was when he learned that Kenyon doesn't give refunds.Watching my career explode on the lauchpad caused some soul searching. I eventually admitted that I didn't have what it takes to be a good political cartoonist, that is, an interest in politics, and I returned to my firs love, comic strips.

For years I got nothing but rejection letters, and I was forced to accept a real job.
A REAL job is a job you hate. I designed car ads and grocery ads in the windowless basement of a convenience store, and I hated every single minute of the 4-1/2 million minutes I worked there. My fellow prisoners at work were basically concerned about how to punch the time clock at the perfect second where they would earn another 20 cents without doing any work for it.It was incredible: after every break, the entire staff would stand around in the garage where the time clock was, and wait for that last click. And after my used car needed the head gasket replaced twice, I waited in the garage too.

It's funny how at Kenyon, you take for granted that the people around you think about more than the last episode of Dynasty. I guess that's what it means to be in an ivory tower.

Anyway, after a few months at this job, I was starved for some life of the mind that, during my lunch break, I used to read those poli sci books that I'd somehow never quite finished when I was here. Some of those books were actually kind of interesting. It was a rude shock to see just how empty and robotic life can be when you don't care about what you're doing, and the only reason you're there is to pay the bills.Thoreau said,
"the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation."

That's one of those dumb cocktail quotations that will strike fear in your heart as you get older. Actually, I was leading a life of loud desperation.

When it seemed I would be writing about "Midnite Madness Sale-abrations" for the rest of my life, a friend used to console me that cream always rises to the top. I used to think, so do people who throw themselves into the sea.

I tell you all this because it's worth recognizing that there is no such thing as an overnight success. You will do well to cultivate the resources in yourself that bring you happiness outside of success or failure. The truth is, most of us discover where we are headed when we arrive. At that time, we turn around and say, yes, this is obviously where I was going all along. It's a good idea to try to enjoy the scenery on the detours, because you'll probably take a few.

I still haven't drawn the strip as long as it took me to get the job. To endure five years of rejection to get a job requires either a faith in oneself that borders on delusion, or a love of the work. I loved the work.Drawing comic strips for five years without pay drove home the point that the fun of cartooning wasn't in the money; it was in the work. This turned out to be an important realization when my break finally came.

Like many people, I found that what I was chasing wasn't what I caught. I've wanted to be a cartoonist since I was old enough to read cartoons, and I never really thought about cartoons as being a business. It never occurred to me that a comic strip I created would be at the mercy of a bloodsucking corporate parasite called a syndicate, and that I'd be faced with countless ethical decisions masquerading as simple business decisions.To make a business decision, you don't need much philosophy; all you need is greed, and maybe a little knowledge of how the game works.

As my comic strip became popular, the pressure to capitalize on that popularity increased to the point where I was spending almost as much time screaming at executives as drawing. Cartoon merchandising is a $12 billion dollar a year industry and the syndicate understandably wanted a piece of that pie. But the more I though about what they wanted to do with my creation, the more inconsistent it seemed with the reasons I draw cartoons.Selling out is usually more a matter of buying in. Sell out, and you're really buying into someone else's system of values, rules and rewards.The so-called "opportunity" I faced would have meant giving up my individual voice for that of a money-grubbing corporation. It would have meant my purpose in writing was to sell things, not say things. My pride in craft would be sacrificed to the efficiency of mass production and the work of assistants. Authorship would become committee decision. Creativity would become work for pay. Art would turn into commerce. In short, money was supposed to supply all the meaning I'd need.

What the syndicate wanted to do, in other words, was turn my comic strip into everything calculated, empty and robotic that I hated about my old job. They would turn my characters into television hucksters and T-shirt sloganeers and deprive me of characters that actually expressed my own thoughts. On those terms, I found the offer easy to refuse. Unfortunately, the syndicate also found my refusal easy to refuse, and we've been fighting for over three years now. Such is American business, I guess, where the desire for obscene profit mutes any discussion of conscience.

You will find your own ethical dilemmas in all parts of your lives, both personal and professional. We all have different desires and needs, but if we don't discover what we want from ourselves and what we stand for, we will live passively and unfulfilled. Sooner or later, we are all asked to compromise ourselves and the things we care about. We define ourselves by our actions. With each decision, we tell ourselves and the world who we are. Think about what you want out of this life, and recognize that there are many kinds of success.Many of you will be going on to law school, business school, medical school, or other graduate work, and you can expect the kind of starting salary that, with luck, will allow you to pay off your own tuition debts within your own lifetime.

But having an enviable career is one thing, and being a happy person is another.

Creating a life that reflects your values and satisfies your soul is a rare achievement. In a culture that relentlessly promotes avarice and excess as the good life, a person happy doing his own work is usually considered an eccentric, if not a subversive. Ambition is only understood if it's to rise to the top of some imaginary ladder of success. Someone who takes an undemanding job because it affords him the time to pursue other interests and activities is considered a flake. A person who abandons a career in order to stay home and raise children is considered not to be living up to his potential-as if a job title and salary are the sole measure of human worth.You'll be told in a hundred ways, some subtle and some not, to keep climbing, and never be satisfied with where you are, who you are, and what you're doing. There are a million ways to sell yourself out, and I guarantee you'll hear about them.

To invent your own life's meaning is not easy, but it's still allowed, and I think you'll be happier for the trouble.Reading those turgid philosophers here in these remote stone buildings may not get you a job, but if those books have forced you to ask yourself questions about what makes life truthful, purposeful, meaningful, and redeeming, you have the Swiss Army Knife of mental tools, and it's going to come in handy all the time.
I think you'll find that Kenyon touched a deep part of you. These have been formative years. Chances are, at least of your roommates has taught you everything ugly about human nature you ever wanted to know.With luck, you've also had a class that transmitted a spark of insight or interest you'd never had before. Cultivate that interest, and you may find a deeper meaning in your life that feeds your soul and spirit. Your preparation for the real world is not in the answers you've learned, but in the questions you've learned how to ask yourself.
Graduating from Kenyon, I suspect you'll find yourselves quite well prepared indeed.

I wish you all fulfillment and happiness.
Congratulations on your achievement.


Dream to Done

Charles Du Bos - "The important thing is this: to be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become."

Yeah. I guess this is the stumbling block in most cases wherein people have had a dream but rarely had the guts and the gumption to pursue it to its end (its materialization)....lest they lose what they already have. I have been fortunate to come across a few friends who have let go of their present and looked at a less certain future. Inspiring, to say the least.

Cars for the Family

Been thinking about family bonding for a while now. I am doing a Malcolm Gladwell here but with no data whatsoever. (Purely based on the Blink philosophy :-)). I suspect that middle-class families (talking about India more than any other region) that have felt the need for spending on a car and therefore own a car may share a better relationship with each other than the families without one. I don't have any hard-core data but neither am I generalising the idea. I am somewhat confident that analysis of family-bonding in families with and without cars will prove that more families in the former category share a good bond. The reasons are obvious to me. The presence of a car generally means more outings(short and long), more trips together, more shared experiences, more joint-exploration of new places, more togetherness during travel etc. Let's ignore the embarrassment and the humiliation that the women generally go through while the men try and teach the former how to drive. Or for that matter, the frustrating experiences that some men may go through with the women doing the back-seat driving. :-) What do you think?

Please note that I am only talking about middle-class families and not the richer lot. The richer lot will probably have more than one car and well, the family culture per se may be quite different from that of middle-class families - Joint driving experiences may not necessarily have the same impact on rich families. Finally, in retrospect, I guess there are a few car companies that have perhaps leveraged on this concept in their advertisements.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Canara Bank can probably Bank on Cannes 2008...!

It's been ages since I wrote about advertisements, a subject I love thinking and talking about. I've been fascinated by ads and have been occasionally sharing my thoughts on the good and bad ones on this blog. But it's been a long time since I watched an ad that I found to be really awesome. Ah...well, that's partly because I haven't been watching any ads at all in the first place. ;) I'd probably be walking past the TV into my room and only an ad that had a true magnetic appeal would have made me stop and look. Anyways, I caught up with more TV than usual in the past few days and came across an ad that I think is definitely excellent material. It struck a chord in me immediately. Made me smile.

Canara Bank is undergoing an Identity and Brand makeover that sounds exciting. It has made a few ads to reach out to the people and communicate its new 'attitude'. I saw two different ads on the same theme and suspect that there probably are some more on the same lines. The ads are extremely good. I loved everything about them - the theme, the storyline, the actors, the art et al. In case you've not seen any of them, underlying this new branding exercise is the theme "We all change for the ones we love". The communication highlights the change of the Canara Bank Logo and that they've adopted more cutting-edge technology but have retained the smile that's on their lips while servicing customers. Hmm. The ads that I caught on TV were:

- A South-Indian woman meticulously learning Punjabi (mainly through soliloquy; commenting to herself on general day-to-day things that she does) much to the surprise of her husband. The climax of the advt. is when they go to the airport to receive her son and Punjabi daughter-in-law that - one would assume - they meet for the first time ever, and the mother-in-law welcomes her in Punjabi. Cute! :)

- A young woman learning the basics of cricket and even purchasing the Indian Team's Blue T (and optimistically checking with the shop-keeper if the T is available in pink ;-) :-D). The climax is when the hubby is watching a match and expresses disappointment about a shot and the wife while casually walking past the place says "He should have hit a square slice!"... :-) only to be corrected by the husband. Very cute! :)

Both the ads are wrapped up with the tag line "We all change for the ones we love". Very cute ads, both of them. Kudos to the team that conceived and made this. I can't stop admiring them for now. :)

Makes me think that the Canara Bank ads will probably make it to the top of the Cannes list this year! Good luck to them!

PS: Well, that may have been the story of the ads. But I've always - naively, perhaps - expected organizations to live their ads. To reflect the spirit of their communication in every way possible and have - obviously - been disappointed more often than not. I hope Canara Bank did enough to help its employees imbibe the spirit of their new identity and brand and reflect a 'real' change - which is what will bring true merit to their ads.

Monday, January 14, 2008

The Visitors................

The water was admittedly dirty and muddy. Murky. But it was still. Absolutely still. It first seemed like the water body was unaware of the thousands of vehicles that tore past it almost every minute of the day. Vehicles that disturbed the peace in every way possible. They emitted smoke and chemicals. They honked and screeched. They chipped off the road. They spread the dust. Was the water body really unaware of (and unaffected by) these disturbances? Come to think of it, who was to be blamed for the dirt and the mud in the water? It is one of those questions that one raises despite knowing the answer! There were a few so-called trees jutting out of the water in one if they were holding hands and wanted to deal with this together. United they stood. But they stood bare. The trees had lost all their leaves. There was no green. The trunks and the branches and the twigs were all bare except for a thick layer of dust that they tried to hold on to rather than burden the water with. A few small blackish grey ducks were drifting along the water creating small noticeable ripples around them. One would imagine the ducks were initially white in colour though it wasn't actually so. As the picture seemed to come together and provoke one to ponder over what she was looking at, a bird as pure as the driven snow suddenly appeared from nowhere and flew past the water body in a slow and graceful manner and alighted on one of the trees that seemed to welcome it with outstretched arms. The reflection of the bird in the water was so beautiful! Slowly, another bird followed the same path but chose another tree. And then, there were some after another. One, not surprisingly, wondered what was so appealing about the place to these beautiful birds. Suddenly, the picture looked very took the mind from a low to a high.

The Baby and the Judge

Lillian Hellman - "Nobody outside of a baby carriage or a judge's chamber believes in an unprejudiced point of view."

I love this quote. :-) But perhaps, in recent times, this has been further reduced to just the baby carriage?!

Friday, January 11, 2008

The Kingdom of Wisdom.....

Look within, seek that wisdom in the silence of your mind and intellect. It shines forth when your awareness transcends the physical, mental and intellectual sheaths of your being. In that pure awareness, experience the bliss of peace and joy of just being. - Zenyasi

Just reading this makes me feel soooooooo peaceful!! :-)

Thursday, January 10, 2008

The Power of a Strong Emotion

A friend and I were exchanging thoughts on people who move away from their home-country to other countries in search of better opportunities, better life-styles, better this and that. So, the friend opined that it all depends on how much risk one is willing to take. We went on for sometime and then sort of warmed up to the idea that it really is about strong emotions. One must either want something very badly or not want something very badly. When one undergoes such a strong emotion, risks would cease to exist....or rather.....risks fade away into oblivion and tend to be dismissed lightly. People just go ahead and dive into the thing come what may. So, if one doesn't succeed at something it really is true that it is only because the emotion behind it was not strong enough. However tough the going is, succeeding would happen tomorrow if not today.

PS: No wonder Ideas are such powerful things that people sometimes do anything for...because underlying them are strong emotions.....

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Wikipedia Enterprise 2.0 Story

This one's a bit old....but hear it from the horse's mouth on the HBS-Wikipedia experience on the Enterprise 2.0 article that had people screaming 'foul'.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Re-Mark-able! :)

Mark Twain - "Always acknowledge a fault. This will throw those in authority off their guard and give you an opportunity to commit more."

MT is a darling! :) BTW, a nice tidbit in case you've not read this before. MT predicted (perfectly) as to when he would die. He was born during the year when Halley's Comet whizzed past earth and died when the same comet was to whizz past earth on its next - return - journey, some 75 years later....! MT called himself and the comet "two unaccountable freaks" who had to come in and go out together! :P

MOSS 2007 - Mostakes!

MOSS' take on potential Mostakes while implementing MOSS... :)
Worth paying attention...

Friday, January 04, 2008

KM Strategy Elements

I generally tend to switch between phases wherein I hate to read anything and prefer solitude... like to think independently....uninfluenced by any other idea/thought/opinion and phases where I go all out and pick people's brains and read almost everything in the hope that some random statement will trigger an unexpectedly creative idea in me. That's not just a long but also defensive statement. Why? I have been rummaging through old posts and old material that I did not catch up with earlier. I found this list on Shawn's....which I quite like.

Fat Chance!

I jumped energetically into the bus and grinned around at the empty seats and chose one that seemed to be comfortable. As is the practice, I plugged into my iPOD almost immediately and looked out of the window while rejoicing about the prospect of having the two-seater to myself as the strength of the crowd seemed to be very thin that day. My joy was short-lived though.

As I sat nodding my head to a peppy number, a few stops later, a fat lady waded in and eyed the empty seat next to me and approached it with a determination that would have put a dog-after-a-cat to shame. True to the determined look on her face, she managed to squeeze herself into the available space thus taking the total count of the number of fat ladies on the seat to 2. (Err....let it be known that I am pretty self-critical in almost everything and that doesn't change even when it comes to assessing my weight....despite losing a few KGs in the recent past) Having cleared an important point, let me now proceed with the story. The fat lady (not me) then seemed to want to stretch her hands and also examine her purse at great length. So, I found myself seeing a third hand - elbow - entering my premises every now and then. I was beginning to get annoyed when she got off. I assure you that it had nothing to do with my expressions. I heaved a sigh of relief and thanked Nature for its little mercies.

But Nature had other ideas. Nature seemed to say "You don't want no fat ladies next to you? Huh! Fat chance!" Nature seemed to want to prove to me that it never runs out of stock when it comes to fat ladies. (Wonder why I was the target for such a thing! Maybe its all about kindness? ;)) So, in came another fat lady though a little less fat than the previous elbow-marauder. So, well, all I am trying to say here is that I had no dearth of fat ladies' company on my way back home that day. Who knows! Maybe they're saying the same thing on their blogs! Or maybe not! :P

Enough of playing around. I am expecting me to come up with a nice intellectual post next week. So, don't give up as yet. :)

Please consider this an Imaginary Post

Ignore this post if you've something better to do. (But then, how will you know whether you have something better to do until after you read this post? ;) So, trust your instinct to make the decision)

When I see someone like you, I am reminded of you...
When I see someone unlike you, I still am reminded of you....I imagine it's you.
That's blah!
Maybe what I see is always a reflection of what's on my mind?
Which means I probably see you all the time because you're always on my mind?
So, do I conclude that you're an internal phenomenon and not an external entity?
In other words, you're an imaginary character!
So, I should, in effect, find it easy to stop thinking of you.....!
What a paradox!

If you didn't ignore the post, don't blame me. Blogging is a medium - in my perception - that doesn't give one the luxury of partial visibility. You get what you see. Wait a minute, I think I changed it. The original is What you see is what you get. :P

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Happy 2-Tw0 Th0usand Ei8ht! :)

To a spiritual student, the day he decides to change and live up to his spiritual understanding, that day and that hour is the beginning of a NEW YEAR. May this year, to all, every dawn a Happy New Year.- Swami Chinmayananda

My standard message for the New Year, 2008. Something I partly invented and partly discovered, maybe a couple of years a great message to spread.... :)

Love, Learn, Laugh and be Bold....!
Go on, and win the whole world! :)

Unconditional Love is such a spiritual and blissful feeling that one's life is an utter waste in the absence of such a feeling....

Wanting to Learn continuously, I believe, is what provides the fuel for life....

To Laugh from the heart is to experience ultimate joy....! :)

....Loving, Learning and Laughing can help one win the world.....make one's own inner world perfect.....

May 2008 be a wonderful year for everyone! :)