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Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Mind Tinker

Have you ever met anyone who is convalescing after meeting a severe car or a bike accident? If you ask such a person where all he suffered injuries, you might be surprised to notice one fact. He might mention only the major pain areas. For example he might tell he has badly hurt his knees and thighs and that the pain there is unbearable. And this all after you would be seeing some big bandages on other parts of his body. The reason would be very simple. He could barely feel the pain of the other wounds. The pain in his knees and thighs would be enormous enough to blind him from the pain elsewhere. He might even not know the location of some of the other wounds, not to mention the scratches. Its his mind that’s fooling him to believe that he had injured only his knees and thighs.
That is what happens when mind focusses on the bigger aspect and treats the rest as trivial. In fact, this is one extraordinary phenomenon of mind that can be used to our advantage and make our lives
more fulfilling.
Those who face hardships see themselves as the mos
t unlucky fellows on this earth. When they do this, they allow their faculty to work just vertically. Rather than employing the lateral thought process and accepting the fact that ‘this' actually is life and nothing else is, they would behave as if some messiah had promised them a happy life and that they are being deprived of all the good things that were promised. While lateral thought gives one the options to overcome one's tough times, accepting life as it is, is more a matter of ‘shifting one's paradigm’, for which there is no better way than to channelise your mental energy for someone other than you (which is also how the minds of people who fall in love work). When you detach your mind from your own miseries and focus on others’, you begin to see your own as meaningless. Surprised you would be when you learn that your own ‘misfortunes and pains’ were actually kids compared to those of some others. Yet another surprise could be when you find that those people did not complain for all they did not have. This concept could not be better put into words as this: “I cried for shoes until I saw a man with no feet”.

I don’t need to write more here, because what follows is in itself good enough to tell what I actually mean to say.




Are you upset at not having received your education at some prestigious school or college?




They do not know if they will ever learn the word 'prestige'.





Are you bored consuming same dishes everyday?







They will manage with any dish they get.








“Had I got more muscles life would have been terrific.” Is that what you are saying?







They wont mind 'just' surviving.









Do you feel your parents could have brought you up better?



They dont have parents.










Upset that you have ‘Nike’ when you should have had ‘Adidas’?









This is all they have.








Are you crying to get that new toy in the toy shop?








They dont demand.









Do you wish for a job that could allow you more sleep?







They too mind waking up but for different reasons.









Did that jolt your neurons?


That is life. In fact that is the only definition of life. Drill that deep down your head. Bitch slap all the thoughts that tell you life can be anything other than challenges and tough times. The earlier you do it, the better. The joy that you are seeking actually comes after you have accepted this truth.


Vishal (Weezkwear).


Do post your comments.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Straight from the heart

The girl that never was…

The following is a couple of two short poems, composed by me for a girl. The girl mentioned here (Ipsy) is not some real human being but a manifestation of my own imagination. The poems are a result of my experimentation with my mind. I wanted to test the efficacy of imagination by mentally falling in love with the girl. The outcome has been fantastic and has convinced me that enormous potential lies unlocked still in the top storey. What more, it has given me insight into the majestic feeling of falling in love and has brought the poet out of me. The poems are also contradictory in their moods. I want the readers to find out that.


BLASPHEMOUS SUITOR

Blame Him for He left no adjectives to admire,

For He pleased my eyes n' plagued my desire,

Jaundiced I’m at His wiseacre entire,

Don’t attempt another Ipsy my Lord!

You may end up in quagmire.


EXEGESIS

Her smile, panacea for sufferings,

Her throat, elixir of life,

Her presence, suffice to intoxicate a many,

Her life, sapience in disguise.

She's not a dose of opium,

Nor is she damsel divine,

She's Ipsy, gift from the heavens….

… that comes once in a lifetime.

A Biography

Kevin Carter: The man whose efforts redefined hunger

May 23, 1994. Carter walks up to the dais in Columbia University's Low Memorial Library to receive what could probably be the biggest honour for any photojournalist.


But what followed two months later is a fact tragic and hard to reconcile.


A brief journey through his life.....

Kevin Carter was born in 1960 in a family of Roman Catholic parents. As

a teenager, he was thrilled by motor cycling and dreamt of becoming a race car driver. Like many of his coevals, he questioned apartheid openly. He often had arguments on the issue with his father, who accepted apartheid.

He graduated from Catholic boarding school, Pretoria in 1976 and then went on to study pharmacy but dropped out an year later owing to bad grades. He then joined the South African Defence Force but found the apartheid regime very disgusting. Once when he took the side of a black mess waiter, some soldiers beat him up and called him a ‘negro lover’.

After leaving the job, he slowly drifted into journalism and joined a group of photographers who wished to
expose the atrocities of apartheid to the world.

In 1993, Carter moved to Sudan to photograph the famine stricken masses. It was here that Carter photographed the masterpiece of his lifetime. As he was wandering in the bush, he heard the sound of a small crying girl who was trying to make her way to the feeding camp. Just as he crouched to photograph the girl, a vulture appeared on the scene. After the photograph, Carter chased the bird away and sat under the tree depressed. Another photographer, Sylvia, later reported he repeatedly kept saying he wished to hug her daughter.

On March 26,1993, the photograph of the dying girl appeared on The New York Times and was subsequently reproduced in papers round the globe. The picture ran a wave of pity throughout the world.

April 12, 1994, Ney York Times phoned Carter to tell him that his photograph had won him the Pulitzer. Ironically, with the fame came not just the acclaim but also criticism. Some from journalism world said the work was fake while some others questioned his ethics on his attempt to snap a sufferer.

The next two months were not the best of his life, with tensions mounting on professional and monetary fronts.

July 27, 1994. at around 9 in the night, Carter parked his truck against a blue gum tree at the Field and Study Centre. He connected the garden hose to the exhaust pipe and ran it into the passenger side window. He got in and switched on the engine. He made knapsack his pillow and lay on his side, sadly for the longest sleep of his life. This is what his suicide note read:


"depressed . . .without phone . . .money for rent . . . money for child support . . . money for debts . . . money!!! . . . I am haunted by the vivid memories of killings & corpses & anger & pain . . .of starving or wounded children, of trigger-happy madmen, often police, of killer executioners . . ."

I NEVER THOUGHT EATING A FROG COULD BE THAT SIMPLE

If you can start out your day by eating a frog, you will have the satisfaction that its going to be the worst possible act you would be involved in, throughout the day.


Don't worry I am not suggesting any non veggie diet here. These are the words of a famous time management guru Brian Tracy. Frog here is a symbol of any task that deserves the maximum attention. It is also the task that is the most difficult but invariably has the highest returns too. And therefore should be on the top of one's priority list.
With so much to do and and just 24 hours at hand, the only way to get the work finished is to be organised. But the question is WHAT TO DO TO GET ORGANISED? Well for all the poor souls who have been struggling with this issue, i have posted some simple A-Z stuff here. Its simple and possibly thats why effective... "It is simple things in life that are most extraordinary. Only wise are able to understand."

A: ACT - Don’t put it off until later. If you
want to do it, act on it now.

B: BREAK IT DOWN - Anything you have to do is
easier, if you break it down into manageable parts.

C: CONTAINERIZE - Separate and organize your
things by storing them in see-through, plastic
containers.

D: DELEGATE - You don’t have to do everything
yourself. Delegate to work associates or family
members. Use an outside company to outsource some
of your work. Or use technology to your advantage,
by delegating to your answering machine, your
computer, etc.

E: ELIMINATE - Get rid of clutter—both physical
and mental. You’ll breathe easier and feel a sense
of freedom.

F: FILE - Don’t let that paperwork grow into a
mountain. File it away in an appropriate place if
you need to refer to it again.

G: GIVE - Give the things you no longer use or
love to a favorite charity organization, a family
member or a friend. There are many people who will
be thrilled to receive your gifts.

H: HOME SWEET HOME - Find a home for everything
you own, and keep it in its place. When you need
something in the future, you’ll know its ‘address.’

I: IDENTIFY - Before putting items in boxes for
storage—or when you’re moving—be sure to identify
the contents by labeling the outside of the box.
Identify papers in file folders, by clearly marking
the tab of the folder.

J: JUDGEMENT - Use your best judgment to
prioritize your life. Be sure you’re spending the
majority of your time on the important stuff.

K: KNOWLEDGE - Knowledge is power. In order to
effectively organize something, be sure you’re
using the organizing systems that will work best
for you.

L: LISTS - Make lists for things you have to do
now, and in the future. Master Lists and To Do
Lists will help you get things done. Packing lists
will ensure you never forget something again when
you travel. Shopping lists will ensure you get
everything you need at the mall. Telephone lists
will remind you of everyone you have to call this
week.

M: MOTIVATION - A huge part of getting organized
is motivation. Once you’re motivated, there’s no
limit as to what you can accomplish. Get motivated
by designating pending rewards for your
accomplishments, involving family members or
friends in your goals, and by making getting
organized a game. And definitely stop by the Get
Organized Now! Discussion Forum for lots of
inspiration and motivation.

N: NO - It’s so easy to get stressed when you
have a million things to do on your plate. If
you’re beginning to feel burdened with too much to
do, learn to say NO to some of those things.

O: ORDER - Rather than living in clutter and
chaos, vow to live a more orderly life. You’ll know
where everything is, and you’ll complete whatever
you start.

P: PLAN AND PREPARE - While spontaneity every
once in awhile is fun and perfectly fine, having a
good plan and effectively preparing, will help you
reach your goals and deadlines, so you can enjoy
maximum accomplishments.

Q: QUALITY, NOT QUANTITY - It is much better to
have a few treasures that you love and enjoy,
rather than having lots of things you don’t
particularly care for. Always think quality, over
quantity, and you’ll simplify your life. Of course,
this doesn’t apply to money!

R: REMINDERS - Use little reminder devices
throughout the day to help you stay on track. Alarm
clocks, timers, e-mail reminders and sticky notes
are all excellent memory joggers.

S: SELL IT - Why not make some money by selling
some of those possessions you no longer want? Try a
rummage sale, consignment shop or an online auction
company.

T: TOSS - If you don’t want it, and you can’t
give it away or sell it, toss it. Make room for the
things that you really enjoy, or that make your
life easier.

U: UNUSED SPACE - Don’t forget about the space in
your home or office that is often forgotten about,
such as wall space for shelves or hooks for
hanging, or space under the stairs.

V: VISUALIZE - Picture how wonderful your life is
going to be when you’re organized. Then strive to
put yourself in that picture every day.

W: WRITE IT DOWN - Don’t try to keep everything
you have to remember in your head. Simply write it
down and refer to it when needed.

X: X MARKS THE SPOT - Place an X next to each
item you accomplish on your To Do List. At the end
of the day, add up your x’s and celebrate for
getting so much done!

Y: YOU - Don’t forget to make time for YOU.
Remember, an appointment with yourself—time for
you with no interruptions—should be one of the
most important appointments in your day.

Z: ZONE IN - Really define what you’re trying to
accomplish, so you have a clear picture in your
mind.




Simple isn’t it?


This majestic stuff was sent to me by one of my friends.
I thank him for his efforts.
All I did was turn that mail into a nicely crafted
blog for you all to read and benefit from it.

Now just dont read and selfishly move away. Please do post your comments.

Sinfully yours,

Vishal. (Weezkwear)

Imagination

A picture can convey thousand words but it can also convey thousand meanings. A picture that may appear utterly simple can be seen in a variety of ways by the people. It’s the same thing that enters the eye (of course I am talking of the people with normal eyesight!) but it’s the mind that decides what to see in the picture. Its not just true for pictures carrying in them some illusion (tessellations, Dali’s paintings for instance) but also pictures which are pretty obvious. Some pictures don’t however convey any obvious meaning and you have to coax your imagination to make something out of it to really ‘see’ the picture. Since it becomes more a question of green hat thinking than of careful viewing, again the interpretations can be multiple. It can even be something different than what the creator of the picture meant it to be. And this is what makes such pics an interesting affair.

I recently received this pic in a mail. It was said to be one of the award winning cartoons ( I did not try to verify the genuineness of the claim). At first I just looked at it, smiled a bit, probably taken by the mindset that cartoons were meant just to make you laugh, and finally closed the mail. Next day I mistakenly went through the mail again. But this time I stopped, and decided to have some feel of the picture. And to my surprise, I could see something in that.

You have to lose something to win something’….. something synonymous to this was my first impression of the picture. The book that the person burnt in order to read the other one might have been the least significant one. Continuing on this success I went on to think that the person might be doing one of the two things. He might either be reading the most important of texts first. Thus even if he ran out of fire, he would burn the remaining of lesser important texts to finish off the most important one. Or the other thing the person could be doing was reading the least important text first, so that if the fire runs out at any time, this book could be used for sustaining the fire and not losing entirely on the content of the book too.

Buoyed by my extraordinary vision, I decided to really cut into the picture. I tried every bit of imagination I could manage but didn’t find much success. Then suddenly my sight fell on the caption of the book and it probably read ‘ Zujev’. I was not entirely sure if that’s what was written there, since a lot of languages had English like characters. Doubting it to be some European language word, I tried a few online dictionaries but that exercise proved futile. My search engine though did give a shimmer of hope by showing it as the second name of some mortals. So I thought to myself that ‘Zujev’ on the cover could be the name of the author whom the reader (in the pic) didn’t like, and was therefore burning down the books.

And it was there that I ended the session of ‘mental torturing’. But now its your turn to see the picture in an entirely new way. Post what you saw, as a comment to this blog entry. I will be happy to edit my article to include your perception.


Vishal (Weezkwear).



Appendix:

The following is a comment from one of my friends, Ela. I thank her for taking time out to write this wonderful idea of hers.


In linguistics there is a law that says the message sent is never the same with the message received. In painting we have different interpretations of the same painting, in literature we have literay criticism as a good example of various interpretations. A literary work as well as a visual work can be seen from multiple points of view. Everyone chooses what he pleases or better said he chooses the symbol that strikes him mostly. A proof of what I am saying is the existence of so many art critics. The author puts in his work of art, let it be literary or visual, significance so that the viewer/reader might grab it. The viewer/reader can either admire the work without making any comments, just for the sake of aesthetics or he can become active by trying to find an explanation of it. The latter, otherwise known as the art critic.

The burning of books is a common issue with art. In Eco’s book, The name of the rose, an entire library burns down. Guillemo wants to save Aristotle’s book (a unique copy) and the entire library from burning down. There is also a film in which a group of people took refuge into a library because of the cold and freezing air outside. It was getting colder and colder and they felt the need for warmth. The only solution was burning down books. Among them there were people who unhesitatingly gathered the books on the floor in order to make the fire but there were also people who disaproved of this infamous act. Anyway I wanted to point out these two categories of people: the art defenders and the art destroyers.

Looking at this picture, a sample of visual art, the first thing I noticed is that it puts forth the coexistence of these two. Here the man behaves both as the art defender(can be seen in the interest he has for the book) and also as a destroyer. We face an image in which two contrasting characters are joined together in one man.

The name “Zujev”, which appears on every book’s cover, is used to outline this oppositon. The book which burns is a copy of the book the man reads. The book which is being read has the same value as the book which is being burnt down. The contrast between the two actions (reading and burning) is powerful. Finally, as Machiavelli put it in one of his famous speech “the end justifies the means”. Sacrifices are needed so that knowledge may triumph. And u can sacrifice art for an intellectual purpose, that is forgiving.





A story.

.... I want a perfect woman.



It was a Saturday evening, the time of the week when families come out of their confines to vent the boredom of the week full of work. Children could be seen in the park playing while their parents strolled on the green turf. John, in his black coat and hat, just sat on the bench, watching the couples enjoying their time, their hands clasped into each others’. Just then his friend Paul with his newly married wife, Jerry, entered the park. John did not notice the couple enter.

Paul and his wife moved toward the bench on which John was seated.

“Hi John. How’s everything going?” shouted Paul, waving his hand and smiling.

“Well she is Jerry, my dream girl,” said he, introducing his wife to John.

“Congrats to you both on your marriage. I am really sorry I could not attend the ceremony. I had some utterly crucial work,” replied John.

“Anyway man, you are lucky.”

“Why so?” asked Paul, still smiling.

“You got your dream girl,” John exclaimed. The smile grew broader on Paul’s face.

“Yeah sort of. Anyway, I was never short of girls. Was I?” Paul said amusingly, trying to tease Jerry.

“No you never were. You were always a playboy of the college. Remember those days? Jerry you better keep the noose tight from right now,” suggested John jokingly.

“So when are you marrying John?” Paul asked, trying to change the topic of conversation.

“Hmm.. not too soon buddy. Atleast not before I find my dreamgirl,” John says and laughs.

“Yeah but as far as I can recall you had a few girl friends too,” Paul said, in a way that sought opinion from his friend.

“Yeah I did Paul. But you know I am just too choosy about people. I have always loved the best things. Be it ice cream, shirts… Those girls were just friends.”

Jerry moved from the place to meet another friend of hers, probably disgusted by what John had just said. But the two guys carried on their conversation.

“So how do you define ‘the best’?” asked Paul giggling. John gave a very excited reply.

“Nothing much. Just she has to be intelligent. Her father must be a rich man. Must be good in bed too (smiles).”

“Hmm.. What else?” asked Paul, with a wry smile.

“Yeah she must be a good cook. I don’t want a wife who makes me waste money in restaurants. Then… she has to be good in some art like singing or dancing. She must be physique conscious as well.”

He continued, “She must be an earning hand, so that in case any one of us loses a job, we don’t have to see troubled times. Religion…well she must be conversant in that. Considering the status of my job, I would also want her to be top class in mannerism and etiquettes. I also want her to be able to go and see my parents, atleast thrice a week, for which I really can’t find time.”

He went on, “If she can handle the household chores… well fantastic. And make my morning by serving me tea in the bed. Wow! If she is a cutie... a bonus... want someone seeing whom I can just forget all the pains of my arduous work routine.”

For a moment he paused. “Go on John. I am listening,” said Paul chuckling.

“Well I guess I want one heckuva of a PERFECT WOMAN,” finally ending his illustrious explanation, a tinge of arrogance dripping from his face.

“Oh c’mon John. You can’t deceive a male by your words. There must have been someone whom you really liked. Someone whom you thought you could marry.”

John looked around, as if to check no one was hearing, then said, “Hmm… yeah there was one,” shrugging his shoulders, “She had most of the qualities that I wanted in my girl.” “But leave it Paul. Talk something else. So when are you expecting kids?”

Paul, sensed John's intent to bypass this conversation. He tried to revert to the topic. “No John tell me who she was?”, virtually coaxing John.

John breathed deeply, reflected and said, “Brandy was her name. She really was made for me. Exactly the perfect woman I had been searching for,” going slightly nostalgic.

“Then why did you not marry her?” Paul asked with a curious looks on his face.

“Uhh… I wanted to. But you know what… she was searching for a perfect man,” replied John.



I got the idea for the story from a joke i read a few years back. All i did was give that joke the shape of a story. Do post your comments on my efforts.



Vishal (Weezkwear)