So I do what I like to do, just see what is happening around me and we reach a bus stop en route. Not so suddenly, but I see a pair of eyes that board the bus. A pair of young eyes, if you might. A pair eyes that are so wide as if they want to take everything around them in a single swoop. A pair of eyes that have the glitter of a young child who wants to know what is happening around, saying silently "I want to be there, I want to be here, I want to be everywhere". I presume that they still are not familiar to the idea of selective perception (blaming it on evolution) or become so apathetic to what happens around us (blaming it on age).
What I do notice in them is the thirst and vivaciousness which have long dried away from my eyes, the zeal to absorb every little detail around me with equal zest and without no bias.
Has age caught up with me or have I become too much selectively perceptive? It just goes on the reinforce what I have long believed to be true and now it is approaching the proportions of being declared as an axiom that "whatever be my age, the day the child inside me dies; that day I will believe that my age has finally caught up with me".
So back to the bus, the child (with these eyes) initially scans her environment, seeming so excited about everything enveloping her, the bus, the metal pillar in between her and the empty seat, the TV hoisted above her head, the sounds around her, the whistling of the conductor, the horns of desperate people in motorised vehicles, the blur of lights in the front, the incessant braking by the driver and the people. She feels wobbly being in a place which looks beyond her control and feels puzzled and excited by the gush of all these intrusions. Finally a hand comes from behind and they are safely anchored to an empty seat ending the intrusions and she settles comfortably into the world she knows best and is comfortable with, the world created by her mother who is travelling with her.
She tried being in a GM, although "genetically modified" would have been a better preference. But it left her high and dry. Zapped, tongues unleashed looking for something that had a zing.She cried "what a waste of time?"
He tried catching the "11 number ki bus, the faster version". However his perfection got in the way because he could not do it just like that.
Then I and he tried smoking which they said helps. I and he realised "in addition to want to being 34 now I and he have to want things not black".
Oh! Then I and she just said "those 32s will always live in perpetual fear of reaching 34s". Someone said "that's escapism". I and She realised "damn you will power".
But then we realised we are just the way we are, unlike a Sisyphus, we have stopped climbing and have stopped wanting. Whatever comes our way is something unasked for. So when someone repeats that infinitesimal argument, we just feel happy for being rewarded for a perception that is a result of not being with us for some period of time. We know because we have not done anything, yet for someone I/he/she felt marginally less than 36.
Oh! Did I tell you, I am 36, he is 38 and she is 35.
PS - Numbers greater than 30 denote waist sizes and number 11 denotes a figure of speech for walking.
- Don't know about
- Have heard the name and the works but never sampled them.
This is a list which I think would be aggregating from now on to index my ignorance. Today's list
- David Foster Wallace - Suicide death on Sep 12, 2008, apparently very famous for Infinite Jest. A remembrance posted on Slate can be found here. Target #1
- James Joyce - I know about Ulysses, never read it, but now in Marshall McLuhan's book "Understanding media" I keep coming back to Finnegan's Wake. Target #2
May God grant me the humility to understand that I cannot read all such great people in my finite life. Let me know if you people know about them.
Update 1 - David Wallace's short story "Incarnations of burned children" can be found here
I've been reading Marshall McLuhan with avid curiosity for the past week. I cannot claim to understand every word that he writes, so much so in certain places he seems far beyond my intellectual capacity. Anyways there are truck loads of gems in the seminal book "Understanding Media" like -
"Medium is the message"
"Media as an extension of the human body"
"Electric age as the mirroring of our own central nervous system"
"Mankind's history is the result of 'taking up the chin'"
I've been altered by his message forever. Coming to what I was thinking, let us denote disease as a pseudo mathematical function - D(O) where
D- Function representing the verb "to induce disease or any other kind of discomfort"
O - Object of the function namely an organism
The current approach in healthcare is simply this function "D" calling itself. In other words, the modern day approach towards healthcare is just D(D(O)) where -
The inner paranthesis denotes the attack of the disease on the organism
Outer paranthesis denotes the attack of disease on the disease itself or in order to cure a disease, the disease must be subjected to discomfiture. Phew, lots of disease in that statement.
Coming to what I wanted to rant about - is technology is really an enabler? In India? At a big software company?
The Scene - Induction program for new joinees at a big S/W company where I am interning.
HR Speak - Dear
Secondname Speak - Ma'm I dont have a second name. (That does happen, don't raise your eyebrows yet!)
HR Speak - OUR DATABASE cannot accept a name without a second name.
Me Speak - WHAT (for the database comment)? What technology is this? How can this happen at this company?
Me Speak - What kind of technology is this? I know they might use a combination of the first name and the last name as the primary key for their database, but the instant reaction was - WTF?
Secondname Speak (in his/her head) - Phew! Now I have to invent a second name?
Ya! Its okay to raise your eyebrows now.