Sunday, September 25, 2005

Pen is mightier than the sword..but the knife is the mightiest!

The last one hour has been great fun.Right now, there is about a quarter of an apple beside my monitor as i write this blog. There is a knife. There are some wads of cotton. There is band-aid. And, on the little finger on my left hand is an antiseptic-lotion-drenched ball of cotton wrapped with a there is band-aid on the finger instead of that cotton and handkerchief. Below the band-aid is a nice little red gash, like a tattoo of a sword,but a few mm deep.

Yes,I have shed blood.But alas, it is for no noble cause! This is the second time in the same week that i have made a cut one of my fingers while trying to cut an apple. The knife is incredibly sharp. The last time i had cut through the slice and on to my finger. This time the knife slid of the skin and shot right in to my little finger. For a second i thought it might have cut the bone. Well it hit there anyways. I cursed my rotten luck with this knife, dropped the apple and knife on the floor and ran to the wash basin. I guess the my blood liked the nice and warm environment inside my body and decided to make itself comfortable there for there was little blood coming out. But the moment i kept it under the water it began to ooze out, then flow, then gush. Soon i was panicking. I quickly ran back, grabbed some dettol and ran down the stairs of the two floors and all the way to the mess to keep my hand under the water cooler's tap. This is supposed to stanch the flow of blood but my earlier assumptions were justified; the blood, now disturbed from its slumber by the cold of the water began to pour almost. Luckily, a couple of my wingmates were there just then. 'Ambulance?' was the first question. Nah, an ambulance coming to pick me up coz i cut myself with a knife?! The thought embarassed me. So i dismissed it and asked them to get cotton instead. 'There are some new russian nurses there apparently. It is a good oppurtunity to interact i'd say.', he smiled. Well, it certainly was but i had to resist temptation in order to check the gushing of blood. So i repeated my request.They glanced at the basin,which had its drain located oddly at the side and at a height so that at any point of time about 4 inches, in height, of water can stagnate. It began to change colour from the nice, clean transparent of water to a murky, frightful, red. They ran.

In the meantime, people were walking in often to fill water and i was just standing there for seconds, minutes, keeping the cold water running and holding my finger under it. The cut was too small to be visible beneath the current of water but slowly the basin was getting darker at the bottom. Darn! If only those guys from MIT hadn't already proved that blood is thicker than water. One guy who came filling water saw about five drops of blood gush out and spill on the floor when i removed my hand from under the tap for a second and he squirmed. Another came when i was still holding it under the water. He looked at the finger.Nothing.He looked at the basin. Gross. The bottom half was almost the colour of blood itself. He left in a hurry. The cotton hadn't arrived yet. So i rushed out to see. Leaving a trail of blood. It was coming. The delay was because the general secretary, whose responsibility it is to have first-aid, had failed to perform his duty. But fortunately, along the way, some M.Tech bongs(begalis) had it. So i was saved. Now i just had to keep the cotton pressed against my finger and the bleeding would stop.Eventually.

As i was keeping the cotton tightly pressed against the finger one of the two wingmates asked, "Did u feel that warm tingling sensation that one feels when blood oozes out?" The other interjected,"Yeah, i know. You always get that warm feeling." Uh oh, i never felt it. Did that mean i was cold-blooded? Thankfully no. I had been holding my finger under the freezing cooler water for so long that it had turned numb! Phew, i was human after all. Then the two narrated the conversation one of them had with this particular good samaritan, saviour M.Tech bong:
"Do you have some cotton?"
"Cotton...cotton..that soft, know cotton"
"Oh, you mean co-tone(co as in coax and tone as in 'thrown' without the 'r'.)?"

We all had a good laugh at the pronunciation. I do not intend to offend any bongs. I too have an accent,perhaps, and it is only human that we laugh innocously at each others accents. I told them to my friends to leave now. For blood was still determined to push his way through all that cotton and i decided i can take him on:one on one. So i stayed there for some time, still holding the cotton, walking around, thinking what a waste of blood! If only i had collected it all in a bowl and not let it go and stagnate in that basin, i could may be have stored it in my room and then kept generous amounts out each night to divert the mosquitos to that source so that i may be spared. Ah, tough luck! I couldn't help smiling though. People shed blood by the litres over battles with each other and here i was having had to fuss over my little finger for the last one hour; and all for no purpose at all. However, emotions were mixed. I was disappointed too. I was armed with a knife, my opponent was a half-cut, unarmed, helpless looking apple and yet i lost as it cleverly shielded my blow and diverted it neatly on to my own hand! Loser! I can't fight an apple even, how am i going to face the world? Thus thinking, i walked back, slowly, towards my room. It was then that i felt happy again. A huge blood trail, all the way from the mess, right up the 4 fleet of stairs and in to my room! I had made an impression on my hostel; an indelible trail of blood would be there once nicely dried. The grand old hostel would remember me now forever! I wanted to make sure no one stepped on the drops and spoiled my chances at fame. That way, even a 100 years down the line there would be this blood trail leading from 358, Alakananda hostel all the way down the stairway and up to the mess water cooler and people would ask how? And the story would be passed on by word of mouth year after year in a slightly rehashed manner until perhaps a day will come when one fellow might say to another, "There was a heroic student by the name of Karthik who chased and hunted down a bunch of armed thieves who had come stealing in to the hostel at night.And this, timid friend, is the blood he had to sacrifice in order to catch the villains.Step not on those coloured spots but admire and bow in respect for his courage." But why did he end his chase at the water-cooler? I hope the change in the JEE pattern will ensure that the future generations who come here are incapable of asking such questions. Yay, i am going to be famous people!

I need to cut and eat apples more often.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Little thinking

I really had no intention of blogging today. But i have been tempted by the high net speed ;) Perhaps it'll be days again before such speeds are seen, and since i have lost that initial child-like excitement for blogging i needed an incentive such as this.

But, what do i blog about? I am not thinking much these days. That's bad. I've got to start thinking again. Hmm..shall add that to my list of 'things to do'. Well, i thought for a brief period while resting in the midst of a game of evening basketball(it is a wonderful feeling to play continuously till you are exhausted and then suddenly stand still, absolutely motionless, and let the wind take away the heat and sweat as if it were pining to get a taste of the products of your effort, physical though it may be. And as i stood still....well, i got bored. So i looked up at the skies as if hoping it would drop down a toy or something to amuse me and it was then that i spotted this bird. For a second i thought it was staring at me and i wanted to wave a hand in invitation for company. But as i looked at it i felt hesitation. There it was, against the purple skies, looking serene, pristine, unspoilt, and absolutely free and here i was in stinky, sweat drenched clothes and i thought we would never deign to accept such an invitation. So i looked down again to return contempt for contempt. And it was then that i asked myself: why was it looking down? It had all the space it needed up there. There was absolutely nobody or no thing in its horizontal plane of view. It could enjoy absolute freedom! Something we humans can never experience. Yet it was choosing not to. It was then that i realised that it was more attached to the earth than that open, free space. Here, on crowded earth was its food, its fuel for survival. Here on overpopulated earth were also, probably, its children, its reason for survival, if at all it cares to reason. Here ,also, it was born and so, perhaps, its emotional attachment if at all it has any. So i just tried to draw a parallel of sorts: If i go abroad, to the land of oppurtunity and freedom, i may never sense so much excitement at this greater freedom. For, here, in India, are my roots. It is here i was born. It is here that my family stays and it is here that i have everything that is of any value and consequence to me! So, effectively, it is no freedom at all! So, i too, might after all, like that bird, keep staring down at India from the greener, higher lands of that wealthy nation.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Privacy lost

I have lost my personal diary. I mean,I just learnt from my friend, during grub, that he read my blogs. My latest blogs. It is as if they've lost their virginity. They are not pure anymore. The words stand naked before anonymous eyes. What's more some nice man by the name Joe has posted a comment against one of them. Thanks Joe. Only, i was a little astonished when he praised the post 'Burst of passion' as good creative writing. I wish to correct my good man here saying that that was the whole truth and nothing but the truth. I shall write with caution hereafter; for at some level of consciousness the fact that these words are being read would be acknowledged by my brain. However, that doesn't mean i'll be more systematic, and structured. It just means i shan't let you in on private detail beyond what i consider permissible. Is addiction to blogging a bad thing? I have posted four blogs in two days now! I need to think of some other distractions. Besides, i am not being very creative here.

Love. What is love? Caught a friend online when she had apparently broken up with her boyfriend. Tough situation for me there. I am not exactly an expert at handling these incomprehensible emotional fights. I said a little this and a little that and finally scared the poor creature out of her wits by telling her to turn in to a saint. There ended the conversation. But i shall get back to the important question: What is love? Does love exist? Is love mere infatuation? If no, how is it any different from infatuation? I am not talking here about the affection for blood relations. That love i shall explain may be in another blog or if you contact me in person. But this 'love' between lovers. What is it? What do they mean when they say 'I love you'? Is it as good as saying, 'I am infatuated with you'? Or is there something beyond mere infatuation in love.If so, what is it? I need the help of lovers here.'Oh lovers of the world, answer me!'. But i need that you give rational, logical explanations. Arguments like, "One just has to experience it. It is something much beyond infatuation,Karthik. It's love." won't help one bit. What is that extra 'thingy'? I do not wish to dismiss love cynically as mere trash invented to clothe the sexual desires. When hordes of men have turned insane, when reams of poetry have been written and when nations have gone to war all for love there must be something to it. I used to be convinced by such an argument. But not any more. Almost as many people believe in love as in God. But that doesn't mean God exists. Does God exist? That question i shall go in to on another occasion.

Now let me tell you all i can on the issue. Love, as we see today, between girlfriends and boyfriends, who cling to each other for a while before they break down and break up is no love at all. That is a plain fad. That's right, fashion. So much has been cleared up. Love, true love, if at all it exists, i am sure, can be felt only after much interaction between the two people for a great period of time. Initially, at the tender age at which people fall in love, there is a tendency on both sides to show the Jekyll in the themselves. This veil of pretence is dropped only after a great deal of interaction, after much comfort is established. Now begins the honest interaction. Here, if two people discover they have much in common then they develop a strong liking for the other person. After all, man is a social animal, and would love to find company that is most like him. When this liking couples with the physical lust, love blossoms. This is as much as i dare blurt out without having experienced it myself. Corrections anyone?

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Burst of passion

For some inexplicable reason i have suddenly developed an obsession for blogging. I just hope it isn't mere childish delight. For one, it is a wonderful means of catharsis. For another, there are no rules in this form of writing. I can ramble on and on in any manner i please. There is no ambition when i am writing a blog. I mean, if i were writing an article then i'd be determined to keep it logical and structured so that it makes sense to the reader and so on..Here, it is writing for the pure fun of it; and perhaps due to a slight excess of free time. I have been indulging in social networking a lot lately. There is this social networking site called 'orkut' where i have just created a place for myself. What's more i have diligently searched out a lot of my friends,new and old, and added them to my list. My apologies to those pals whom i have missed out on. But with the kind of net speed we have in the insti it is a lot of hard work. In some senses, it has paid off. I got in touch with a lot of my school and junior college pals. Infact, i had more words over im the other day with one of my junior college friends than i did in the two years we had spent together!! Almost everyday of last week i was busy chatting either to a school friend or a college friend. It was a helluva lot of fun. Particularly so because it was quiz week and this was a wonderful diversion from the boredom of my department courses.

I have also been ambitious enough to create a community of mine called 'Born Philosophers'. I have been doing my share to make it popular by messaging possible members. Perhaps, when my blogs become popular this would be another effort in that direction.

Quizzes got over today. Today's quiz delayed and held at our lunch hour. I was hungry and restles, so i wrote brief(and hopefully accurate) answers and turned in my paper a good twenty minutes ahead of time much to the surprise of my prof. who said, "Are you done?!" "Yes,", i replies smiling at his astonishment and left the room with a high head hoping that my friends would notice and come up to me after the exam praising my 'studness'. Well, that wasn't to be for i had to go somewhere when they all came out. Darn!

Can u believe it, i am blogging at five in the evening. No, i can't let blogging spoil my wonderful routine. Playtime folks!!!! See you soon!

Monday, September 19, 2005

Doubly miserable

I shouldn't have got myself so worked up after the quiz. It is a twenty mark exam after all; not the end of the world. I hope my hastiness in forgiven by the professors. Some may have a sadistic pleasure in setting tough papers but most might just genuinely overestimate our capacity. They are forgiven their errors too. So now we are even. Yet, i feel miserable. I spurted out non-sense on an impulse. But to add to the wound is a physical internal injury. The mess food seems to have been unhygenic. I am feeling slightly ill. I suspect the mess workers are terrorists trying to take over the institute by poisoning the students. I must devise a master plan. Uh oh, must hold back these cynical accusations. So, perhaps some mess workers get a sadistic pleasure out of poisoning us but most might just geniunely overestimate our capacity to withstand poison.Nope, a similar argument fails. No, i must not be cynical. Trust, dear fellow.Trust. Perhaps, they were trying to maintain hygene after all but some sinister insect with a fiendish plan, a jehadi in all probability, commited suicide by nose-diving into the dish after it was prepared. Ah, wicked insects. I knew it. So, i must control the insect population in the campus. This is getting tougher. What should my master plan be? No, i must not be so sceptical. Perhaps the insects are not jehadis after all. Perhaps this particular one was genuinely bored with life. I can imagine: the same fellow insects(there isn't even a variety in colour and clothing!), the same filth, the same filthy odours, the same filthy victims. The same routine every day of its short life. How dreary! Little wonder that it committed suicide(there is also the incentive of losing out on fewer hours of precious life)!. But then, there is still evil lurking in the world. Why didn't the fellow insects console the depressed and disillusioned creature? Why didn't they comfort him? This isn't suicide friends. It's cold-blooded murder! Now, what motives do we see? Either he was a paramour to some impulsive, thoughtless 'insectess' OR he was plain rich; perhaps he was a spider with an excess of insects in his web. But then, the throngs in my room never quarel in this way. Is that because they fear i am policing them? Perhaps. But perhaps, it wasn't a spider at all. Hmm...i need to learn more about insects and their territorial nature. So, things are getting complex. Now, i am not sure of the precise nature of our villian. Veiled evil. How do i track down this evil now? Can't think of anything. But no, i must not be sceptical. So, there is only one thing left to do. Trust in in in in my mind........

Master Plan

Okay, I have just written a quiz. I am excited. I suspect there is a league of professors in the institute who are actually asylum escapes in disguise. I have found two of them during the present quizzes. One gave us notes to prepare from for the quiz and asked precisely those parts which he had deleted deliberately from these notes while the other gave almost half the paper from what we learnt 365 days back. There are a handful of others i have identified from quizzes in the past years. But i haven't apprehended them for i didn't realise their sinister intentions at that time: they intend to take over the institute. So, i intend to take serious action now. I must diversify my choice of subjects. But wait, i am in my final year already and am running out of time. The mob is a huge one. No, i cannot let my institute suffer in ignorance of all this. I just devised a master plan. I intend to take the help of my fellow campus mates in my mission. I shall carefully cull out the most intelligent students from all the various disciplines and years and form a secret intelligence squad. The sole purpose of the members of this squad is to prepare thoroughly and write quizzes in diverse subjects. Each time there is an aberration, an absurdity in the score of these peers an asylum runaway has been identified. Ah, now that i have the plan well-worked out i am happy; but if i am to contribute to this squad as a member i had better go now and prepare thoroughly for tomorrow's quiz. See you soon!

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Intimidating Linux

I have just bought a new computer. Out of fear that viruses will get transferred to my comp. thru the LAN i am using linux instead of windows. The moment i open the terminal i am at a loss. What commands do i type? What do they mean? What is a file? What is a directory? Would this command upset the comp? So many questions bombard my head. What's more, i have been able to use my computer only 3 weeks after purchase thanks to a host of hardware and OS problems. So i feel all the more insecure about doing anything without checking with existing linux users. It is little surprise to me that windows maintains its popularity. The user-friendliness of windows is just incredible. Even my grandmother uses windows.
All this leads me to another question: Why so much jargon? 'Compile rpm from the source' my friend told me. 'What's source?', i asked in all ignorance. 'it is a .bz2 file' was the curt reply. Ah, that's much better! 'So, are all ".bz2" files souces?' 'Usually,' was the doubtful reply. Why is it so full of jargon? Why can't it be in plain english? I sincerely wish that linux were and the commands were made more user-friendly so that even ordinary mortals like me can access enjoy the luxuries of linux.