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Success

Sometimes…


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Sometimes you feel, the world is against you
Moments of joy are a countable few
Sometimes in the heart an anger awaits expression
But it waits too long, and comes out as depression
Sometimes your love, does not return the favour
Any attempt of bridging is but a failed endavour

Sometimes the night seems too long
Ways seem lost and thunders too strong
Sometimes in the mind, we house a fear
A fear whose voice only we can hear
Sometimes your rival overpowers you in war
And all you are left with is a deep burning scar

Sometimes in life you ask for a second try
But knowing there is none, you can only cry
Sometimes in life, you know you’re right
But the time’s too worse to showcase your might

Sometimes you watch victory pass by
Sometimes you see ambitions simply die
Sometimes you believe you can acheive success
Sometimes knowing that you still refuse to progress

Sometimes betrayed is your belief which persisted
You seem to be lost, secluded and cheated

Those are the times you must not loose your will
Move along, and never stand still
As repenting will only double your grief
Shatter the confidence, weaken your belief

But do slow down for a moment to ponder
Let free your mind, let it wonder
Where were you wrong, why do you suffer?
Why is it that life seems tougher?

Realise the problem, and think of a solution
Modify the way, multiply your devotion
Demistify your mind, and never look back
Sometimes do check if you are on the right track…

Fly off!


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Fly off! you wandering soul

Advance towards the standing goal

Rip apart the strings, and set yourself free

Fear not mountains, forest or sea.

Time passes by, don’t be late

Hurry up now, as success won’t wait

Why do you fear, the unknown and unseen?

Don’t you want to know, what real adventure means?

Off you fly, but cautious you move

Don’t let yourself, slip off the grove

Addictive is the world, blinding is its glitter

It deceives your senses; even sweet tastes bitter

But fear not the world, as it can be tamed

All you need, is a mind properly aimed

Use your wisdom, to cautiously move through

Filter out the truth, from what seems true.

Advance with caution, and you will realise

A world is waiting, full of surprise

Amazing is the taste, and pride of fulfilment

Joy of success, satisfaction of achievement

And when in you journey, you reach a milestone

Reflect upon the fact, that you are not alone

There were some, who considered your success their own

And they are waiting at the home, from where you have flown

 

Photo Courtsey: The Big Picture

In the Hunt of an Internship


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Welcome to IISER Kolkata’s APC Roy Boys’ Hostel – housing 300 of the brightest minds of the country in a 3 storied – 2 winged building. Here you would find the marvelous gray matters doing everything but studying. There are many interesting aspects to the life at APC Roy like the ‘ultra-mechanized’ students’ canteen, the bathroom singers and the colorful language of ours… Not to forget the frequent and regular ‘snake encounters’. This feature is unique to our hostels. Since our arrival here, we have been acclimatized to seeing snakes to an extent that now we seemingly don’t fear them (probably it is the other way round). People say that the life must be great as we are the holders of the largest scholarship in the country. But alas they miss out one of the vital pains of our hearts – The struggle to hold on to the scholarship…

Early August: Session begins

Summer Vacations have ended… People sharing experiences of the ‘research projects’ they underwent – well theoretically. In reality…

SDG: Dude! That is what you call a beauty… Smoking Hot! I’m telling you, she’s going to be mine within weeks… Just wait and watch

MP: Don’t tell me… I have heard it time and again. Give me a break…

SDG: No man this time it is serious… Just wait and watch…

AS: Great man! I see determination in your voice!

SDG: Don’t you?

AS: Sure… So when is the treat?

SDG: In the next life… You moron!

Late August to Early September

This is when the heat rises… the hunt for internships begin. We need to do an internship each year to extend out fellowships. But as it always happens… there is a small problem… who will take us?

AS: So, what about next year?

SDG: Hmm… Would have to apply again! What the hell! Not again!

SG: Why now? Relax… We have just finished one…

MP: We have to hurry up… don’t want to be in a hurry like the last year.

September to March

This is the peak time for applications. The process starts off by a careful selection of mentors: their work, profile, availability etc. Everyone starts with high hopes. As usual there are a few lucky chaps who get their internships early and as usual… this puts on additional pressure on the rest of them. Time passes by and down go the hopes as each one awaits a single positive response. Those lucky are envied. Mails are sent more frequently and (more importantly) more randomly. Terms of friendship change…

MP (as usual peeping through the window): Any mails as yet? (Mail=Positive Response)

SDG: There is one I received, but it says that the lab is full…

MP: Heard that SP has got one…

AS: What the… Why always him? UM has got one too… SM is deciding between Stanford and Max Planck…

SDG: As usual, I am doomed…

MP: So am I, 50 mails; 2 responses; both negative

SDG: What the hell do they write to get one?

AS: I don’t understand why the Profs don’t reply? Do they ever read the mails or do they filter out all our mails?

One fine day when AS lazily was strolling outside his room; SG literally comes running to him and jumps onto him with ecstasy…

SG: Got it! Got it! A positive response from Caltech!

AS (with an expression too weird to describe): That’s great! Fantastic!

SG: I was browsing hopelessly for a professor somewhere, as all of a sudden my mailbox shows of this new new mail… Yippee…

AS: Well done man!

AS returns to the room with a hung face; and declares

AS: SG… Caltech…

MP (who has not got an internship yet): Oh no! Not Caltech! How can he… I mean… SG is going to CALTECH???

SP (who has got one): OK, that’s fine… What is the fuss all about?

AS: Shut up you moron!

One of the most pathetic situation is that of a person whose both the room-mates are going abroad and he is struggling hard to get one even within the country. Amidst all the mutual discussions of the visa process, air tickets and dreams of the foreign land; the one on the receiving end finds himself in an ocean of utter discomfort. Helplessly staring as a deer, he turns to one who never disappoints him – the pair of earphones – and tries to shield himself from the ‘noise’ (although he nostly doesn’t succeed…). At this moment it is only natural to realise the truth of the famous dialogue from the movie 3 idiots

Agar dost fail ho jaye to dukh hota hai… Par agar dost first aa jaye to aur jyada dukh hota hai…

Although the emotions, the disappointment and the disgust is only transient and temporary, one gets the true feeling of restlessness as he journeys through…

I feel I will miss these days when I pass out. This hunt has taught us a lot… How to write mails – LOTS OF MAILS; How to negotiate; What does it mean to try desperately and above all How does a hard earned success feel like…

Disclaimer

All the people named here are very very good friends of mine. The article is an earnest attempt to bring a smile on your face and is meant to be taken in good humour. No inferences whatsoever must be drawn on the nature, character etc. of all those named (if you ever get to know their real names).

Introspection of the Introvert


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Today is a very special day for my blog! Reasons

1. It is almost my 50th blog post.
2. Today is almost the 1st birthday of my virtual blog.
3. Today my real blog almost turned 6 months old.

Getting to the point straightaway… My blog has two birthdays: One in February end (when it formally came into existence) and the other in September end (when the first post came into being). Notably, both all three of my initial claims are only approximately true. But I don’t care! It is still a very special day (because I say so).

I still remember the day when I got the first comment on my first post The Mound of the Dead by Dietlind Wagner. The ecstasy, the happiness, the pride. From then onward did start the journey that never looked back in time.

The blog as it stands today, has its own story to say…

Firstly, the name of the blog… “When Introvert Speaks” was inspired from my earlier pen name on the blog of our batch – ‘Introvert’. I wish I could provide you with the link to the blog, but sadly we lost the blog in an unfortunate accident. The title of the blog “Random Thoughts” should be perceived as “Thoughts of Random”. The name “Random” is my nick name in the hostel. More on ‘Random’ here.

Secondly, I would like to admit that the blog as it stands here has contributions from several people in various ways.
1. My friend Subhradeep – my travelling mate. Without him, this blog would not be as colourful as it is now.
2. My fellow bloggers in college – Mohit, Priyom and Vaibhav. Even if I am the more popular of them :P; they are more experienced and better bloggers than I am (That’s what I feel). They are one of my primary sources of inspirations for the blog.

Lastly, I would like to look back at some of experiences blogging. The first thing that comes into my mind is that I have a huge number of friends now. There are people whose blogs I look forth to read. And that ‘world is a beautiful place with wonderful people around’ has expanded its meaning for me.

I do realise that I had made promises which were never fulfilled (regarding the upcoming posts after the exams last year). To defend myself, I would say that, my failure should be pardoned on the grounds of me being a student (I can very see the flaw in the argument right away) and upon that a physics student (lazy).

One of my friends from Sri Lanka (Mekala Rodrigo) had described my blog as “Random thoughts from a Physicist about everything but physics”. I would like to add upon the ‘everything but physics’ part. Whatever I write is largely inspired by physics. I believe that physics, in its heart is not equations, jargon and weird names. It is more of a philosophy, an art and an attempt to admire nature. It is nothing but a very neat series of arguments in the quest to understand nature.

That’s all for the day… Hope to see your comments soon.
Namaskar!

(I have finally decided to revert back to my original tagline, which I used in an earlier blog)

Let the randomness of the universe increase forever…

The Introvert

P.S.-
You should have queries regarding the tagline. Questions regarding it are not most welcome…

Running Around to Keep the Chariot Still


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Reading is a pre-requisite to writing. While I must admit that I am not a voracious reader of ‘highly intellectual literary material’, since my entry into the blogosphere I have been reading and enjoying (otherwise I won’t read) thoughts and views by people around the world. So in this regular routine of reading blogs, I came across this interesting piece by my friend priyom…

Recollections

Dad accompanied and insisted on waiting with us for the school bus. We didn’t want him there, (certain issues regarding inappropriately-handled-teenage-trauma) we were perfectly capable of waiting on our own and we were already shaking with nervousness in our new grey skirts with matching grey stockings.

And it was in those quiet few minutes of silent anticipation that we saw a man with khaki pants and loose chappals. The man was making loud hand gestures and was walking around in circles. We smirked at the behavioral ridiculousness and wondered if there was something wrong with him. Our dad however did not even reciprocate by a small hu-ta-tu.

After that, we would see him there almost every single day, same routine of course. We pronounced him to be unhappily senile and yet crazily amusing. On perfectly good days, he would sometimes sit down to talk to himself from perfect hollow memory. At times, he would simply march to and fro. However if there were in fact more fitting conclusions to this daily show, we never did know because our bus timings did not allow us the opportunity of any more such clarifications.

In the afternoon, we would see him perched on this bench outside a tiny tea shop, staring into the distance. We speculated on an extremely sad family history and on his whereabouts during the night, if he actually had any place he could call home. We saw him as weak and uncared for.

We made it a point to shamelessly stare at him each morning till the day we allowed ourselves to grow up and till there was no longer a bus at 8.30 anymore. We gave ourselves the permission to forget about him simply because we didn’t care enough.

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It was some time before I came back home for my college holidays. That day, they were sawing the huge birch tree near our lane. But that old tea-shop was still there. And sitting with the same vacant expression, was the same person that I had lost to memory some years back.

It was not like he was a part of an exciting story and deserved any specific remembrance. But somehow, on highly dramatic grounds, the fact that he was still there, unchanged, unaffected had me feeling triumphant.

His being there told me that he had survived changes and time. Because I sure as hell hadn’t.  Yes, he was a consolation. He was still there.

The author does not state what he had he been doing in the earlier days. Neither do we know whether he was successful in his quest. But the story reminds me of people around me who seemingly achieved nothing all their lives. You might very well say that they wasted one great chance over their cynical acts. Delve deeper into their lives, only to realize how they have meticulously succeeded in what they aimed for. In most cases their rarely appreciated contributions are instrumental in consolidating ground for things which can be appreciated.

Hats off to the wheels of the chariot of success on which our heroes ride; for they are the ones who keep running around to keep the chariot still…

The Exam of Life


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Why are you so restless, my mind?

Is peace that you seek so difficult to find?

Why do you tumble through ups and downs?

Why do you care about the smiles and the frowns?

“Sir! Please! For my Children…” (Bhaiyya! Bachchon ke liye kuchh de do). These words awakened me from a nap, only to  see a pair of hands been spread out in hope of money. I raised my eyes to see a lady, very poorly dressed along with a child, maybe in his tens. I took out a rupee coin and gave it to her.

It was a lazy afternoon and waiting for a train on the platform made it even boring. And after a very busy Christmas, one requires a short nap for sure. But as my sleep was already broken, I decided to take a walk down the platform. Then I saw a bunch of coolies (the people who carry heavy luggage for people) discussing the recent India-Pakistan cricket match. They seemed to be enjoying the rare respite from the work they do.

The jolly mind of mine turned pensive. I was happily rejoicing the long awaited results (which stated that I was amongst the toppers of the class), the eagerly awaited holidays and the ever delicious home-made food (one of the two reasons I want to goto home – the other being sleep). But now I was filled with questions.

“Look at yourself, Arindam! What do you do? Feed yourself over a huge scholarship! And why did you get the silly scholarship? Because you cleared an exam. Does clearing an exam make you so eligible that you make your living virtually without efforts for the next 5 years of life? Where does the money of your scholarship come from? From the government. More precisely, the tax payers. That includes the coolies sitting there, the vegetable vendor who comes to your house daily, the auto driver who drove you to the station.”

Very true! It is eventually they who let me study throughout at subsidised rates. And for all these favours, what do they expect in return? Development. Why is it that the lady had to spread her arms in times of need? I believe that I still have something to do to make the people here proud.

The problem of the country starts only when the brighter lot of the country flees away from the responsibilities. If I use the advantages given by my people for my own benefit and luxury I would be a parasite, a cheater.

So what, if you were born in a dirty lake? If you run away from the lake into a cleaner one, the lake remains to be dirty. Why not clean the lake instead to make the lake realise its true true identity?

“Try to make others happy; happiness for you is born out of the happiness they get.”

Yes I topped my class and a handful of people congratulate me on that. But I await the day when I die – May the world congratulate me on succeeding a exam – the exam of life…

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