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July 23, 2009

I was a late entrant into the world of Harry Potter. Picked up “The Sorcerer’s Stone” when people were already through their copies of “Azkaban”, and I must say, I was pretty underwhelmed it. It was about the same as some of the better Enid Blytons, and I, being in my late teens, was pretty disdainful of the whole experience. The Chamber of Secrets was a little better, but I am being completely blown away by “The Prisoner of Azkaban”, (yes, as usual, I did not manage to keep my resolution!) which was supposed to be the best of the lot, as heard from a lot of friends, and also from other blogs.

How did I know I was “blown away” and not merely “intrigued” or “excited”? Because while I was reading it after a long (and productive, for a change) day at work, the lights went out, and I did something I haven’t done in at least ten years. I picked up the underused flashlight from the side of my bed, clicked it on, and continued reading! It was a wonderful, nostalgic experience. Brought back memories of boarding school, where torches were our most prized possessions and apart from the reluctant visits to the john in the middle of the night (if it was one of those dorms where it wasn’t possible to pee out of the window, snigger..), playing “Catch and Cook” with everyone pointing their torches at the cyling and trying to “catch” the other fellow’s torch-beam, and raiding lockers for food, flashlights were mostly used for reading past lights-out.

Hope the book is as engaging right through to the end, and I can maintain the momentum enough to complete at least one more HP book before going back to a murder mystery (which, by the way, are the silver lining to the dark cloud that is murder, don’t you think? As Govinda / Sanjay Dutt would say: “Murderrr agar na hota, toh mysteryaan na hoti / mysteryon ke bin chalaak detective bhi na hote..” I can go on, but will stop it here.. Quietus!)


The Hymn of Creation..

April 4, 2009

You know the one, the hymn chanted so impressively in the title of Shyam Benegal’s “Bharat Ek Khoj”. I refer to it here not because this is my first blog post (that’s just a coincidence, I promise I am not so cheesy). Actually, have been wanting to start a blog for many years now. Tried a couple of times, but failed due to an extreme aversion to discussing my innermost feelings as well as for flailing my opinions about amongst all and sundry. Hence this attempt at an anonymous blog. 

Anyhow, to get back to the original line of thought, I refer to the Hymn of Creation primarily because I have been thinking a lot of about motivation today. I have an unbelievable amount of work pending, not doing which will ruin my entire next week, possibly all of April. Most of it is boring data compilation in Excel, which, you would agree, is work most foul. I mean even hard, physical, back-breaking work is better, because it lets one revel in the “dignity of labour” feeling that is anyway so hard to come by these days. So yes, I have been unable to motivate myself to work today even though this shirking has the potential to destroy any remaining aura of dependability that I have managed to protect so far in the eyes of my co-workers (some of whom I genuinely like and don’t want to disappoint) and my boss. (Who’s also amazing. Seriously.)

The Hymn of Creation has a couple of lines which go something like this: 

“Who verily knows and who can here declare it,

whence it was born and whence comes this creation?”

All you have to do is substitute the word “creation” with “motivation” and you will get the full import of my emotions at present. I mean what is it with motivation? Why the hell is it so hard for a reasonably intelligent and usually sensible guy like me to do relatively easy work sitting here in an air-conditioned office, working for a company I love and in a function I was born to excel in? I mean I have been wanting to start blogging for at least 3-4 years now. I had registered this account on WordPress in late February, I think, and have been opening the page and admiring the empty template almost daily since. How is it that I have suddenly gotten rid of my inertia in this matter when more urgent tasks beckon? Why am I still unable to get to the real” work? I think this is what the creators of concepts like Structured Procrastination are going on and on about. Maybe for some people it is impossible to eat the frog. If faced by a frog we just have to eat, we would procrastinate ourselves to death by starvation (I am assuming one can’t eat anything else till the frog is eaten. If that’s not the case, I’ll take the Maharaja Mac instead, please). 

Not that I am complaining. While the frog sits with dread in his big round eyes, waiting to be eaten, I am up and about, happily chasing any red herrings that care to flit by.