Category Archives: life

How I forgot my delicates and Rupa came to rescue.

Overconfidence and I are chaddi-buddies, we go back a long way. I can’t help it now, it’s in my genes (mental note – pitch the idea of jeans with an in-built underwear).

I find packing my stuff for travel a chore, so I delay it till the 11th hour, just to make it more challenging and exciting (1% of you will have a I-know-that-feeling smirk on your face, yeah, wipe it off, because we forget at least 1 item every time).

This time, I flew without my briefs (and boxers).

Not a big deal you may think, airport has those stores, but dear readers you have to keep my thrifty behaviour also in consideration. Also, paying Rs. 900 for Benetton boxers makes less sense when you can get Jockey for just Rs. 300 (5% of you are nodding your head in agreement, yeah, we are cheap and we know it).

So I touchdown Bombay at 10pm (yes, 10% of us still call it Bombay) and after checking into my hotel I take an auto, my instructions were clear – take me to any mall/market where I can buy underwear. Imagine how awkward the conversation would have been if we had more women auto drivers. #EqualityIsScarySometimes

My knight in three-wheeled chariot took me through silent alleys and deserted lanes (so much for a city that never sleeps) to JB market. I hopped from one shop to another, finding Jockey was a joke in these modest shops where Rupa, Shilpa and Sheeba ruled the shelves.

Desperate times call for desperate measures, I knew how packed my schedule for next three days was, and I knew how much I love my hygiene, especially waist down. So I did what the title suggests… (15% of you may remember Rupa Frontline ads. As kids, our favourite underwear joke was – Rupa ki underwear pehenoge toh Rupa kya pehnegi… gosh, we were dumb).

In a matter of hours, I was standing in front of a mirror, wearing one ill-fitting, ugly pastel coloured, snug in a surprisingly comfortable fabric. Those ugly ads at the back of auto rickshaws from my childhood became the harsh reality of my adulthood. A humbling experience this, it taught me one thing – that even if you stay at the best of hotels, concierge can’t help you with such brief hiccups.

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#THINGSIAMTHANKFULFOR

  1. An uninterrupted supply of entertainment. Be it a hard drive full of movies, a good broadband connection to stream TV series or a good old fashioned TV with the new and advanced HD channels, I have it all.
  2. A pile of books that can make me wise. Now all I need to do is to pick them, wipe the thin layer of dust off them and turn a few pages.
  3. SO MANY FOOD APPS. I remember a few years back I had to think hard about where my next meal is coming from, now, I have to think hard about where my next meal is coming from.
  4. No addictions. Social media burst really did a number on me. I was active on way too many platforms. Now I feel repelled by most of the content and most of the people generating that meaningless content online.
  5. My old age. I know I’ve cribbed a lot in the past about a few grey hair on my head and what not. But shutting elders up (the pesky ones) just because you’ve achieved more than those monuments of cynicism ever could, is a feeling you couldn’t buy with money or Mastercard.
  6. Flaunt value. It’s kind of a wholesome achievement. You flaunt your skills, your wit, your possessions (the ones you dreamt of as a kid/teenager/jobless youth), your future plans (more when you are unreasonably ambitious like me).
  7. The possibilities. Unlike many people of my age who are settling down, I am still enthused about life and all that it has to offer me. Yes, leading a relatively unstable life is scary, but hey, even those who play safe die in the end.
  8. You guys. Who read, like and subscribe to my posts. Seriously why do all youtube videos end this way?

I’ll write more when I think of more. You have any?

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UNFRIEND NON-BELIEVERS.

And no, I’m not talking about the ones who criticise you to make you better. I’m not talking about friends who pull your leg when you fail. In fact, maybe it’s not about other individuals. Unfriend the little pesky non-believer in you if you have to.

The reasons for doing so:

  • These are people who never had their own “Everest”, so it’s not just that they don’t believe in you, they are probably incapable of understanding you. Isn’t that the first premise of any friendship/relationship?
  • Their doubt is contagious. Even if your will is as strong and determined as Mohd Ali, sometimes these naysayers punch you out with their expert negative logic (secret: they put weights of their failed past in their boxing gloves).
  • They sometimes make sense. And that’s the most dangerous part. If Edmund Hillary had a friend like this who constantly told him drop the very risky plan to conquer Mt. Everest, it would still be a virgin peak. Men who like to be on top, gimme 5!
  • They will always be there to say, “I told you so” and if your dreams are big you’ll have many failures; you don’t want that kinda negative energy around you when you are already down.
  • If you could time travel, you’d know these people won’t do anything spectacular with their lives. They would happily be the puppet of time/situation/peer pressure/so-called-righteousness/system/government/dysfunctional family and of course luck.
  • So unfriend them today, because an year from now you would regret not taking an action even though a great post warned you about these demons who feed on your dreams.

Good night.

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Not to brag, but I can smile in sign language.

For last 9 months I’ve been working with a great guy who’s deaf and mute. This is the first time I am doing something like this, and surprisingly it’s easy and awesome. At first, I had no clue how it was going to work out, as he is my art partner and I am in the business of communication.

So the exchange of ideas started with us writing stuff on a piece of paper. I couldn’t talk to him without my pen. And this is how it went sometimes:

Me: I think you should reduce the font size. 
Him: No.
Me: If you do it we’ll have more white space and the layout will look clean.
Him: Size is ok.
Me: Well, it’s totally your call. No pressure. But more white space means eyes will go straight to the message. It’ll be loud and clear and yet not in the face. It’ll be noticeable, but not shouting for attention. It’ll be there, but not there. You feeling me?
Him: Hmm…
Me: So will you do it?
Him: No.

From drawing letters on hands to typing on the phone to explaining stuff with hand gestures to laughing at client’s feedback, we’ve come a long way. Now I even know how to swear in sign language (just one word, and yes, mostly used for the same client).

What’s magical is that now he tells me about his family, how naughty his kids are, how hot the weather is outside, how much he hated Fan, and how bad Vodafone is, and that’s when I have to make calls for him posing as him to threat the telephone network. Sigh! We do all great things friends do.

Aren’t all human relationships similar? You can’t truly understand each other, but you still try to work things out. The only difference is that you expect the other person to understand you better, because technically you speak the same language. Maybe if you speak less and smile more (and obviously, smile it like you mean it), there will be less friction and more understanding.

Hey, it worked for me.

 

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My advice at 29 – have more dreams.

I was always driven. Even as a teenager. I wanted to do something fruitful with my life, even though I was as confused as any normal teenager if not more. My teenage ended 10 years ago and now I have all that I imagined.

Sounds great, right? It is.

But what follows after you get what you want it an endless void, a vacuum, which sucks you in if you don’t have the next dream aligned in the barrel of your cannon that lets you shoot for the stars.

Having a dream is no wild goose chase. It actually determines who you are as a person and who you can be.

Today, I’m just a designation. Today, I’m just the salary that gets credited in my bank on every 1st of every month. Today, I’m just my boss’s apprentice. Today, I’m just a guy who wishes for a lot of things, but dreams about none.

All this, because I had a very few dreams.

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Don’t let your dreams take the backseat.

It has already happened for most of us and we don’t even notice it. The daily grind is so overwhelming that we forget what we really intend to do. ‘Pursuit of happiness’ awaits while the mundane duties/responsibilities/routine  consumes us.

We’ve found our comfort zone in living the same day, every day. There’s something peaceful about a life with ‘no surprises’ and we are getting too used to it.

Buddha once said, “the problem is that you think you have time” and this captures our lifestyle in one line. We are waiting for a miracle to happen, for stars to line up, for perfect opportunity to show itself, for something to happen while we live the ‘busy’ life.

Ask yourself – what’s keeping you busy? And can it keep you happy forever? The answer might help you prioritise your life better.

 

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Here’s to bad decisions!

It’s Friday night. Some of you should be half drunk by now and if you are not, your bartender is doing a lousy job. Even if you are at home, like me, with an ice cream tub in hand, raise it and make a toast to all the things that didn’t go your way.

Why you wonder? Because one of the greatest poets of all time, Mr. Kanye West said, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. Example?

Shitty jobs remind us the value of life.

Horrible bosses make us humble and detail-oriented.

Bad relationships teach us how important friendship is.

Bad friends are a lesson in trust and honesty.

Being in a bad shape motivates us to run.

Running out of breath tells us to quit smoking.

All the resentments make us think.

And thinking leads us everywhere.

So next time…

Try and turn a “damn” into “damn good”.

Cheers!

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You owe yourself a life.

Good grades to your parents.

Good time to your friends.

Good performance to your boss.

A painful amount of tax to the government.

We owe so much to the people around us.

It’s safe to say that it’s a demanding world.

The only way to beat this stress of owing

is to become more demanding.

Yes.

Become more demanding with yourself.

Quit that shitty job that makes you feel worthless.

You owe yourself recognition.

Travel to that place that’s currently your desktop wallpaper.

You owe yourself some fresh air.

Call off a relationship that’s not going anywhere.

You owe yourself some self respect.

Lose touch with friends you have nothing in common with.

You owe yourself some quality time.

Make money, make friends, make something you never knew you could make.

You owe yourself some excitement and novelty.

Buy that thing before it goes out of fashion.

You owe yourself some pampering.

So next time when anyone tries to ruin your happiness

by telling you what you owe them,

just remember that you owe yourself a life.

 

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You know what, it feels good to be ancient.

I turned 28 last week and as you can see old age is slowing me down. Gone are the days when I used to write my birthday post on the very day. On a completely unrelated note, now I understand how old people are able to drive cars slower than a three legged camel.

Watch this badass video and you will know why we old people are so cool —> Old people know shit!

With a limited stock of ‘fucks to be given’ priorities become clear and many self-inflicted inhibitions disappear in thin air.

Old age makes you realise that you are your favourite person – such a calming state of mind.

‘Been there done that’ and ‘bitch please’ situations show up now and again, reassuring you of a life well-lived.

Peer pressure? LOL! Young man, show some respect, you are talking to a dinosaur.

And of course, there is always nostalgia to keep you smiling. In my case it was the good ol’ 90s. A time when kids were stupid and life was simple.

Getting old feels good as it gives you more reasons to stay young. So go ahead, flaunt your wrinkles, run fingers through your salt n pepper, give someone an unsolicited piece of advice, brace your past and hug your future and don’t forget to smile like a kid – with your eyes and your heart in it. Age gracefully happily.

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Why did I learn to compromise?

As a kid, I never thought I would be happy living a perfectly mediocre life. Did you?

I remember jumping off swings, that too, when they reached its maximum swing. Stealing laddoos from kitchen; not one or two, but sixteen. Singing songs loudly, innocently replacing words I can’t remember with rhyming words that I made up. I remember playing in mud, cold, sun, with a running nose, indoors, outdoors, with next-door neighbours, with strangers, and everywhere I felt like. I clearly remember saying what I felt and not what others would like to listen. I knew less about compromising back in the day. Living hardcore came naturally to me.

Can’t really remember when did I start playing safe? Why did I put some dreams on a backburner? What was so worth my happiness? Validation? Acceptance? Or just the plain fear of not achieving it all? Why did I learn to compromise?

It surely hasn’t made me any happier. Settling for the second best hasn’t helped me build a character. Easy way out is really the hard way. Staying put when you are meant to fly does not give me a high.

I can’t think of a good reason why I slowed down. Can you?

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