i am nikhil

nikhil's muzings


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As I lie here, awake, unable to sleep, eat, read, study or do anything else seemingly useful, I think. Seems a bit paradoxical somehow. Being reduced to watching bugs spiral endlessly around the cool white light, bumping repetitively into it, nothing becoming of them or their efforts. Seems like a metaphor for so much. Just read The 3 Mistakes of My Life, by Chetan Bhagat. It’s cover proclaims the author to be ‘The biggest selling English-language novelist in India’s History’ as New York Times puts it. It all makes you think. The successful investment banker, product of the premier Engineering & Management Institutions of this country, IIT-D & IIM-A, working hard to produce a best-selling novelevery two years, apparently all based on true incidents. Irrelevant. The Big Indian Dream. Totally relevant. Wanting to make it big in life, wanting that job security, that plush apartment with great decor, that smooth sports car, that envy-inspiring wife. Isn’t it every other guy’s dream today? How to go about it is altogether a near impossible question, leave aside figuring out the answer to it. So like the mindless hordes that we constitute, we all fall in step with whatever is thrown our way. We expect others to make decisions for us, and then live those decisions, complaining and cribbing that we never got to make our own true choices. The fact that we didn’t want, or couldn’t to is somehow always forgotten. I am one to speak cause I am totally aware of being one of those very sheep that I speak of, participating in the mass delusion. It started somewhere in standard 8,and continued for the next 5 years. The mad rush to prepare for the country’s best engineering college. What did I want to be?

Engineer or Doctor? It’s that simple. A binary choice. And I had it easy, with my parents to back me up. But I had no idea of my own accord. A few weeks back, when an engineering aspirant asked me which branch she ought to take, it set the clocks whirring again. I simply asked her to go visit the engineering college, interact with the professors, use the internet a bit and decide herself. Of course, help was at hand if needed, but the decision was her to make. Both the aspirant and her mother stared at me, as if I was suggesting she go take a year off exploring the Bahamas or something like that. I mean, it keeps coming up every now and then in every other conversation. What after graduating? Are you going to stick with the job you have managed to land, or move to a better one? What next? A masters degree surely, but when? MBA or MS? Or is it going to be the Civil Services? I honestly am clueless.

I mean, I have taken it easy. Really really easy. Cool as can be. That’s the fact of the matter. Lebowski says Fuck it, Let’s go bowling. Been there, done that. OK, so I ended up reaching the end of a four year degree in five years. OK, so I have got placed in a mass-recruiting IT firm that hires by the hundreds. So what. I have dreamt out plans before, down to every last teeny-weeny irrelevant detail. And managed to have them amount to naught. So now, if I’m playing it by the year, why all the fuss? Why can’t I be just another guy, sitting here idly, listening to Floyd at midnight, minus the prescribed joint, sleep deprived yes, food deprived yes, eyes shot to hell from having watched 3 movies, read two novels and studied a weeks worth of course material in a single day. I find turning off my laptop an irritating task, I like to use idle processor time to hunt for extra-terrestrials and spinning pulsars. I reach out to check my mail the moment I open my eyes from whatever little sleep I manage to get. I talk inexplicably long hours on the phone about nothing at all. I feel sleepy whenever I have coffee that has any amount of milk in it. I spend more time figuring out Erewhonian universes than the one I happen to be stuck in. I make unfathomable and alarmingly regular references to a singular tome in all my conversations and writings .I have no clue about what I’m gonna do in life. I still read upon on the latest research in the field of high Energy physics with very little chance of being affected or contributing to it in any fashion. No shall not go on to win the noble prize or propound a earth-shattering theory in any discipline. I don’t see myself as the head of a corporation or a country shaping millions of lives with my work. I do however wish to be the man, who can have his indulgences satiated once in a while. That is what the 20lpa dream is about. The means seem irrelevant, as long as they are legal and conscientious, but that’s more of a convenience and precaution really. I really can’t think of anything that I cannot do or see myself being incapable of achieving, provided its reasonable enough. These times, these idyllic moments are sure to come back to me later. I doubt many get to experience what I have got. Learn by stumbling and falling. And after falling, lying back and wondering at length about everything before you pick yourself up and get on with clambering back up. Getting to use that grey muscle located up there on the top, that most of us are too busy to bother with. But from what I can make out, you can either ponder and think and question, or be happy. The two seem mutually exclusive somehow. Like the question and it’s answer. Everything comes back to it as always. Guess there’s a reason for that. Life like everything in it is cyclic, and tends more often than not to come full circle. Like a wave travelling around a circle, complete with ups and downs, going on ad infinitum.

“I’m afraid,” he said at last, “that the Question and the Answer are mutually exclusive. Knowledge of one logically precludes knowledge of the other. It is impossible that both can ever be known about the same universe.”

He paused again. Disappointment crept into Arthur’s face and snuggled down into its accustomed place.

“Except,” said Prak, struggling to sort a thought out, “if it happened, it seems that the Question and the Answer would just cancel each other out and take the Universe with them, which would then be replaced by something even more bizarrely inexplicable. It is possible that this has already happened,” he added with a weak smile, “but there is a certain amount of Uncertainty about it.”

Life, The Universe And Everything, Douglas Adams

Written by iNKV

June 8, 2008 at 20:24

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. the expression – Nice I would say. :)


    June 9, 2008 at 04:02

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