I remember the first time I kissed you it felt like gravity. As we sat next to each other and I held your hand the space between us was shrinking but I don’t remember moving closer to you. I tried to slowly climb down the footholds of the familiar so that I didn’t fall too hard if there was a bottom.

There was no bottom. There was just the pull of an invisible force drawing us closer. I’m not sure what happened next, it feels as if my memory has holes. Maybe my mind was so focused on the moment it forgot to take down notes. I don’t know if I kissed your cheek first but I remember that our lips did eventually touch. I remember closing my eyes and losing track of everything around me at the time they did. I remember slipping back to reality each time we broke contact and looking out of the rikshaw to be surprised at how much we’ve traveled. I never thought that Amboli was too close to home before. I remember offering to drop you home at least five times, because staying there inside of that feeling for as long as possible made the most sense. You refused each time.

When you finally left I know that I felt something close to dizzy, something close to light headed. I felt a way I hadn’t felt in so long that my mind couldn’t correlate it with anything known and decided to file it as an altogether new feeling.

Of the times we’ve kissed after that, none, save a few felt as good and as right. Maybe it was a sign of the way things were going to go. When I look at you today I don’t see the girl who kissed me the way she did. I think that my mind has split you up into many different people. Maybe it’s because I’ve spent so much time with you and thinking about you that I can’t comprehend all of it as one person. Or maybe it’s because I need to convince myself that the girl who kissed me the way she did was only with me for that span of time and doesn’t exist anymore.


When I was about fourteen, I distinctly remember thinking that my goal should be to have as much fun as possible in this life. I held on to this belief for quite some time. Even today I’d say that it isn’t a bad philosophy to live by. You need a rational plan for maximising the fun in your life. You can’t just quit your job today and then spend all your money travelling in the name of having fun because after that you’ll be broke and unemployed and then over a longer period of time you’re not having that much fun after all.

By now I’ve come to learn that there’s two distinctly different kinds of fun. One is the kind that’s strictly temporary and leaves you with just a hangover and the regret of time wasted when it’s over. The other kind leaves you happy, with a warm afterglow of contentment. This is the kind of fun you want to have more of. This is what keeps you motivated, inspired and going. I heard someone say that happy people make the best activists. I think happy people make the best anything. Nobody’s as good at what they do as when they’re happy doing it.

It’s not easy though, to pick activities that are more the lasting kind of fun (lasting-fun for short) over ones that are more temporary-fun. The same things that used to be lasting-fun can quickly turn temporary-fun if done too much, at the wrong time or with the wrong people. You’ve got to make habits out of activities which make you consistently happy, and keep switching around the ones that keep you happy for a while. You’ve got to make sure you have enough time to do nothing. And sometimes you have to make your peace with the fact that the lasting kind of fun is just not going to be found. We can call them bad months.

Good Days

I have good days. Everybody has good days but I have days on which I feel twice as intelligent and at least 50% more energetic than normal. These are days when I can fix things and solve problems and learn new things and write well and make music and generally save the world. Sometimes I can do all of that without even needing coffee. They sometimes come far apart and sometimes crowd together. Sometimes I get a long string of consecutive good days.

Everybody has good days but I don’t know if everybody’s good days are as good. I don’t understand people who can do a consistent amount of anything everyday.

Being mediocre

I’ve been working on Redwolf for two and a half years now. The thing about being one of three people running a company that’s slowly growing is that I need to manage too many different things. On good days I get an uninterrupted hour to work on something. On bad days its ten to fifteen minutes. What I’ve found is that I’m not good at switching between half a dozen things over the course of a day. I’m good at doing one thing for at least half a day, preferably four days at a stretch, and doing it well.

When doing too many things in a day, on good days I feel like I have got a lot of shit done and on bad days I feel like I’ve wasted a day. What’s missing is that I rarely feel like I’ve done something really well. And I’ve known that feeling. I used to be really good at solving computational puzzles and making algorithms for competitive games, and permutations and combinations, and writing good code. I’ve known that feeling and to not have it anymore is difficult to be happy living with.

I know that having started Redwolf and having got it till here is not mediocre; I meet enough people from time to time who think that what we’ve built is awesome. I know that it takes a lot of something even if I don’t know exactly what it is to continue doing what we do and keep doing more of it, but on most days I’m left feeling like the work I do is average, if not below average.

I’m tired of feeling mediocre. I’m done with it.


I can never write much where when I spend a lot of time with other people, being social. I guess when most things I want to say have been said to people there’s not much left to put up here. I’m growing increasingly bored of talking to real people.

Birthday Wishlist Update

It’s been four months since my birthday and (what seems to be) my last birthday gift arrived yesterday. After being alive for 26 years I can tell you that sometimes birthday gifts don’t arrive on your birthday. Since all my gifts are here I felt obligated to take a picture with all of them in it and update you on the state of my birthday wishlist.

Birthday Gifts
All my Birthday Gifts
Another birthday gift!
Another birthday gift!
Yet another birthday gift!
Yet another birthday gift!


Here are the gifts, in (approximate) order of arrival:-

  1. The set of New York City cards from Surabhi: It made absolutely no sense that she gave me these before going to New York but it’s a sweet gift nonetheless.
  2. T.A.Z.: The Temporary Autonomous Zone, Ontological Anarchy, Poetic Terrorism: I gifted this to myself just in case the rest of you failed to deliver. I felt like I needed something hardcore. I’ve read about a third of it so far.
  3. The electric guitar strings from Anil: No, the guitar itself is not a birthday gift. There’s no way I could include the strings in the picture without the guitar itself. As you can see I’m already putting these to use. The guitar is a loan from Arvind while he’s off studying to be a Business Administrator. I guess it would be a gift if he never took it back.
  4. Dan Mangan’s Nice, Nice, Very Nice from Kitu: This really is a beautiful album. I suggest that you listen to it if you haven’t already.
  5. The Portal 2 Companion Cube Ice Tray: This is another gift from me to me. I found this when looking for awesome birthday gift suggestions to give you people. When I found out that nobody was planning to buy it for me I decided that I must have it no matter what so I bought it for myself. It makes the friendliest weighted companion ice cubes you’ve ever seen.
  6. The beautiful bottle of Mezcal from Apeksha: I have no idea what Mezcal is like but I’ll be finding out soon. It has a worm at the bottom of the bottle. I’m not yet sure how I feel about that.
  7. Nick Hornby’s A Long Way Down from Ann: I just started reading this yesterday and it seems quite fun. I can’t remember the last time I read a book written by a Brit.
  8. 2 Packets of Vietnamese coffee from The Murd: Yummy. This completes the gift collection
  9. There was the bottle of Cafe Patron that Lokur got me but there isn’t really anything left of that to take a picture of.
  10. I’m terribly sorry if I forgot anything. Four months is too long a time for my ageing memory to accurately track.

Birthday Wishlist

A couple of people have asked me what I want for my birthday so I thought I’ll make a list and put it up here the way this stranger on the internet always does. Here’s a list of a few very affordable things that I would like gifted.

  • Dunlop .50 mm plectrums.
  • Decent electric guitar strings.
  • Vietnamese coffee. (I have decided I will settle for any good filter coffee)
  • A Bacardi Breezer. (To be consumed on my birthday, of course.)
  • Your favorite album (that I don’t already love. [This applies to everyone reading this post. Everyone must at least give me this. Online listening links will be accepted.])
  • This, or something like it:
  • A (good) Guy Fawkes mask.
  • A can of spray paint
  • A book. (literary fiction / modern science fiction / music theory / guitar / an autobiography of someone I’ll really like)


Please note that this list is only suggestive and items from outside this list will also be gladly accepted. This is just to get you thinking in the right direction. If you’re too broke to afford any of these things then other non-material things will also be accepted. Such as hugs, love, and company to dance in the rain with. (“Happy Birthday” wishes on the other hand, are quite worthless. Please do more than that.) On the same note, don’t feel restricted to get only one of these things, multiple gifts will also be accepted. In fact, the first two suggestions come nicely as a pair.

Expectantly yours,

The sum of small parts

I have an attention span of maybe 20 minutes. For as long as I’ve indisputably been an adult I haven’t gotten really good at doing something, and I usually blame this 20 minute attention span. The few things I’ve got good at doing are things I can do for hours, but such things are few and can be counted on the fingers of one hand. I’ve known for years now that there’s another handful of things that want to get good at but I’ve made depressingly little progress since I’ve started working. Work is another great thing to blame my lack of accomplishment on.

I’m not going to try and use this twenty minute span rather than fight it for a while. I figure, if I do 20-30 minutes of 3 things I want to get better at everyday, that’ll only take an hour to an hour and a half. These twenty minutes should add up to something in the long run, and this time will mostly come out of time that I sit wondering, “what do I do today” after getting done with work. There’s even studies that show that doing half an hour of something everyday is better than doing three hours of it once a week because of neural pathways that get reinforced and neurons that fire in your sleep and other-such-convincing-biological-stuff.

I practiced scales on the guitar for half an hour yesterday and fifteen minutes today. But even those fifteen minutes felt pretty good. I also spent around twenty minutes writing this blog post today so that’s something. You should keep your fingers crossed and hope this isn’t just another blog post about a plan to do these things that I always wanted to do that gets forgotten about in a week.

Off the grid

I’m bad at multi-tasking. Unless I’ve had an overdose of coffee I would be much better off doing one thing at a time. And that’s only because if I have had an overdose of coffee there’s nothing you can do to constrain me to one activity short of putting me in a straitjacket. I’m bad at multi-tasking, and this is a difficult thing to say with surety because we seem to be a generation of people who think they were built to multitask. We’re surrounded by televisions and laptops and tablets and smartphones that scream out for our attention all the time.

I’m immersed in the internet. Trying to keep the internet out of my thought-space on a normal working day is almost as hard as trying to hold breath in my lungs. The last time I did something uninterrupted for more than an hour was probably years ago. I’m so deeply addicted to multi-tasking that I don’t even want to tell you how I plan to make it better right now. I only plan to conduct an experiment, to see how much of a difference not being distracted all the time can make. I plan to spend 2 hours off the grid everyday. Fine, we all know that’s over ambitious. I plan to spend 90 minutes 3 times a week, not counting Sunday, off the grid.

This can be anytime after 10pm, so I have to make sure that I finish work by 10pm on these days. And if I want more, then I can easily spend 4 to 6 hours off the grid on Sundays. This will be 90 minutes where I turn off the internet and my phone. No TV either, but I can use a computer if I want to, as long as it’s offline. I know I should ideally turn the computer off too, but computers have music and audio recording software and lessons on music theory, or whatever the latest thing I want to learn is.

I worry that I know almost for sure that I’m a less interesting person than I was three years ago. I’ll let you know how this goes.

An Empty Room

This post is coming to you from an empty room which has no furniture in it except for this computer table. This room also has the most beautiful sounding reverb that makes almost any music sound nicer. And so I’m going to do something I’ve never done here before, I’m going to post a recording of a song. It’s not my own song, it’s by a band called Blind Pilot. And it’s recorded on a terrible inbuilt laptop mic. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Three rounds and a sound