Monday, November 17, 2008

Back from Vacation

Vacations, especially the longer ones are often considered to be an excellent way to rejuvenate and gear up for another spell of mounting challenges. Never mind if your boss doesn't think so. After all its he who has to do all the dirty jobs you were hired for. But what happens thereafter often is quite contrary. For instance, I have 10 briefs in my mailbox. But what the heck, i decided to write this piece. I know for a fact that my boss at this very momentcould barge into my cubical and make my life a living hell. But i really can't help it. For him unfortunately i'm not his ceiling fan he can switch on and off anytime he likes. In any case, i must admit he uses an AC.
Besides, everyone finds the needs to acclimatize. Especailly after a vacation. Like i remember having read how astronauts do so. After having taken a trip to space which i must admit is quite a relaxing one, at least they dont face problems of reservation, crowded trains and so on and so forth, they laze about in a pool of water for hours together for reasons which are way beyond my understanding. Nevertheless i love the idea. 'Wouldn't it be great to have one in office?' (a pool i mean) i asked myself. Resuming office after a long vacation, stripping off, getting into a pair of trunks, uncorking a beer bottle, ordering for kebabs and idling about amidst all the clutter and clatter. It would be great to go on like this for a week. Or two. Ok lets all understand that business ain't doing too well, so say 2 and half weeks. Then i guess it would be time to take note of issues surrounding you and be a part of business as usual.

So then I'd take my seat, click open my mail box, find ten briefs lined up, decide that there are surely better things to do and i'm not my boss's ceiling fan. Who cares if he uses an AC. And go about writing yet another such piece. Hows that?

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Tales from Togaland

Ted heard a knock on the door. And then another. He didn't bother to answer it. He wasn't expecting anyone. It was 11, his bedtime. And then, he heard someone call out, "It's me, I've been looking for you". "Am I expecting you?", Ted asked. "You've always been expecting me", the stranger answered.

The last time Ted saw his father when he was 9. He was 81 now. Or perhaps 79, he didn't know for sure. But there's one thing he knew, he knew he'd live to see his father. At least once before his maid finds him submerged in the bath tub. There's something he had to tell his father, that his mother wasn't a bad mother after all. She provided him with everything he wanted. Good education, a kind stepfather and left behind $35 after clearing off all the debts.

Ted lived all his life in a humble cottage amidst the mystical wilderness. Amidst wild elephants and the placid cheetals. Amidst scavenger vultures and charming peacocks. 'Civilization' he had only heard off. But he would never forget the day he heard the train blow its whistle. The day he walked miles and approached the railroad that flanked the forest. He remembered how he ran, petrified by the screeching sound. He pledged to never go back. And he never did.

The stranger knocked at the door another time, "Where have you come from?", Ted asked the stranger. The stranger was silent for a while. And then he answered, "It's called civilisation". That word rang a bell in Ted's mind. He was reminded of the shriek. He had never seen a train before. But he thought of it as a monster dragging human corpse. "And what is your business here?", Ted questioned. "I've come to take you with me", the stranger answered.

Ted had heard nothing about civilization. Apart from the shriek. He was sure there was more to it. He craved to know. Though, he never wished to experience it. So, he unlocked the door for the stranger. And when he did, he saw a young man with a pleasant face dressed in a black cloak. "Hello", the stranger greeted Ted. "What's your name?", Ted asked. "Well, lets save that for later", the stranger said, "Can I have some water?". Ted walked into a dark room and some time later came with a bowl of water. "Who sent you?", Ted asked. “Civilisation”, the stranger answered, “the crusade on a mission to conquer the world”. “What do you want from me?”, Ted asked. “The world outside longs for you Ted”, it was the very first time the stranger took his name, “the mortal world”.


Since then, it’s been 100 years. Ted has had many such visitors. Over and over and over again. His house, a speck in the endless forests, rests calm. An occasional knock at the door is possibly the only voice ever heard. The fear of civilization still causes a chill to run down his spine. But Ted’s glad that it’s the only facet of civilisation that has ever reached him. He still longs for his father. He still longs for someone he doesn’t have to call stranger. But stranger he is. Stranger to the world that calls him Ted. Stranger to those who have seen his decomposing self in the bathtub. And then they call him ‘dead’. They say, “Ted, are you dead?”.

Then Ted answered, “Dead - is that what civilisation calls their immortal selves?”.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Who are we?

Humans would be an obvious answer. We're definitely a lot more interesting. Think creative. Think of yourself as an alien. In another land. Think of yourself as being somebody else’s imagination. As puppets on this earth. A source of entertainment for the extraterrestrial.

While we busy created sources of entertainment for ourselves, little did we realise we could very well be a source of entertainment for the unknown world. Someone who possibly lives with us. Shares this planet with us.

Why do dogs bark, or rather howl in the night? There's nobody on the road then, and neither do they bark at each other. They bark at... I really don’t know who.

I just looked up the meaning of humans on the internet. Documented here is the first i came across, 'All of the living human inhabitants of the earth'. Very well. So what becomes of me when i cease to exist? I don't think the dictionary provides an antonym for the word 'Human'. It should. It'll help us define who we are better. It will define our scope of thinking. And our scope of existence on this planet. It will define the very motive of life. Expressions like 'ambition', 'hard work' and so on and so forth will be understood better and in the right context.

For now this is all that i have to say.

I've left you with a question. And myself. Till tomorrow.