Blank IV

And here we are at the fourth edition of the annual posting called Blank, where I bring to you the latest of my pearls of wisdom – things that I thought of and things that could benefit you. Hear ye! Hear ye! Hear ye!

Ah, for the love of pretentiousness! To believe that one knows the things that should matter for the herd and hence needs to be followed, and will be shown deliverance. There are real estate guys who’ll tell you that their latest project is for the ‘connoisseurs of the good life’ and you can ‘spend a lifetime appreciating the subtle nuances that elevate one’s lifestyle above the ordinary.’ All you need is just Rs. 1.4 Crore. Bite me! Am now relegated to a lifestyle that is ordinary!

But then, I digress. Technically, it isn’t a digression as I wasn’t in any topic in the first place. I just got sidelined onto something that irks me – the presumption about what I’d like and what kind of life I lead based on my gender, my age, my income and my appearance. And all of this rendered in a pally smirk – “c’mon yaar, we are all the same”. “You can plug in your smartphone into this, and it’ll tell you everything about how your stocks are doing, and and live IPL scores also, so you also know how Dhoni & Virat are doing.” Pally Smirk. “And also <Insert latest B’wood gossip here>” Smirk, wink, chuckle.

Ok, I really should be getting to what I intended to write. But then, this is a blank post, so am allowed to go all over the place. Look what tradition does, eh? The first time, I didn’t have anything to write, so I came up with a Blank post. The second time, I did the same because, I just found myself with nothing to write, again in July. And then the third time on, we have a tradition. So basically, every July I look forward to writing something about nothing, because that’s tradition. Never mind that at most other times, I write about nothing. So this time, am going to buck tradition and write about something. Or maybe not.

****

Usually, when I pull up the MacBook and open the page to post something, a part of my brain starts revolting. “Let’s go somewhere else! Let’s go home!” It’s the same reaction that I see increasingly when an article suddenly introduces Physics equations to explain a concept. That ability to work through things, to concentrate on something and come out with an answer is increasingly hard to come by. There are moments when I do get there, but it usually takes a lot of beating around the bush, a lot more than before in fact, before some thread is caught which leads me on to where I want to be – the Zen state.

I don’t want to blame it on age. I don’t think age has anything to do with it. The problem is something that am staring right at as I type this. I have 7 tabs open in my browser. Sometimes it is more. And in one, Twitter says there is 1 new tweet; I ignore that while making a mental note to go check it out later while wondering who could be saying what, before it updates it to 3. Someone’s really out to say something!

Thankfully I deactivated my Facebook account. Not sure when I’ll get back to it. If I stay away long enough, maybe I won’t, ever.

(Ah, I had to go check it out, didn’t I? Checked out what the tweets were about, that is. Oh well, something about Sleep and the teenage brain, which goes something along the lines of our biological clock being a bit wonky during teenage years. I find it a bit weird, as most human beings were off to sleep when it became dark. So what’s with being a teenager? Used to hunt more? Ah, see what happened here! I digressed. Again.)

Like I was saying, the FB account has been deactivated. The struggle to unfetter myself from these distractions has only just started. There’s still Twitter and Whatsapp and Pocket to wage the war on. To be able to stay away from the phone or the computer (actually I stay well away from the computer, the phone more than makes up for it), to be able to sit through a movie without checking out the latest on Twitter, because, well, if I miss out now, those will pile up! To be able to just be, without fiddling with a phone or computer.

But this is so ‘easy said than done’! Especially when most social occasions are with people you don’t want to be with, to avoid topics you don’t want brought up, where others are the experts, not you, like for e.g. your life – the phone is something that is easy to be lost into. To manipulate conversations into more predictable ‘Kids these days, always into their phones!’. Ah, the elephant in the room.

I’ve started meditating in the morning, for around ten minutes. Wonder what good it’ll do. My Blood Pressure is still on the higher side(only slightly though). “What, you?!” is what I get. Yes, I’m an angry, angry, angry man. Especially when driving. And this again I attribute it to the above- to being easily distracted, to being on the lookout for distractions. (I feel Zen on the Bullet though, *sigh*)

I know I’ve painted a pretty bad picture of myself, but am not (yet) at a stage where my eyes are always shifty and am always impatient, looking for the next distraction fix. Still quite far from there. I can hold perfectly normal conversations with people whom I know aren’t going to start lecturing me on how to lead my life. I just have difficulty concentrating on things like work, reading for long durations, even watching a movie for long durations. In other words, am normal, like you and others. I know being able to concentrate is well above the normal. And that’s what am going to shoot for.

Bah, I wanted to write something else, I had so much to tell! But such is the nature of the beast. You start somewhere and end up somewhere else. Maybe next time.

 

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5 thoughts on “Blank IV

  1. This is not a blank post, it has a subject: distraction in the digital age 😛

    Given how few books the rest of us are reading and how many books you are blasting away regularly, I can say that you are clearly above normal. Yes, your concentration powers might be reducing, just like everyone else. But since your capacity had already been more than average, you will maintain that lead. If our human race were to decline into idiots (Idiocracy, what a prescient movie!), you would still be one of its leaders 😛 G,D&R

  2. Didn’t realise you had deactivated facebook. I have greatly reduced going there myself. Good luck.. I think all of us should find that time to sit and be.. rather than be pushed into action by something external and trivial.

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