Owing to my pathetic interpersonal skills, which are as pathetic online as they are offline, hardly any blogger has tagged me up till now. And let me be honest, I always wanted to be tagged, but nobody considered me or my blog good enough to be tagged. Okay now, that I’m done with my perfunctory whining against the powers that be in the World and beyond, which I anyway keep on doing with tags like Why the World is Doomed (click), let me get down to business!
Some rules of the Game:
a) Show off your honesty (and modesty) by thanking the person who gave you the award and link to their post.
b) List 15 honest things about yourself. Cheating makes you lame, so just play along, all you taggees.
c) Select 7 other bloggers you think deserve this award and pass it on to them.
d) Notify said bloggers about the award and invite them to be the honest ones next.
a) I wholeheartedly thank Srishti (click), whose strongest claim to being wonderful, phenomenal, sensational, awesome, unimaginablysupercoolintelligentandnice human being is the fact that she tagged (click) me! Apart from that, a fact of unsettled significance is that she blogs.
Okay now coming to the easiest part of the tag – 15 honest things about myself!
1. I’m quite honest!
Of course I am, why else would I consider jotting down 15 honest things about about myself as the easiest task in this tag, huh? But keeping in with my honesty, I must also add that the qualifier “quite” umm… lends itself to be kind of, you know, misused. Moreover, “honesty” is subjective, isn’t it? On a more serious note, I do have an unconventional view of honesty. I feel, honesty, just like other ideals has a higher purpose, and that higher purpose happens to be human happiness. This happiness has to be acquired through pragmatic means – such that it would not cause too much discomfort to others, so as to upset society’s harmony, and nor should it hurt my conscience to the degree that I would develop disdain for myself. So given that goal, honesty would mean telling the truth, not concealing significant aspects of what I would regard as truth, but if my conscience is convinced and rather demands that I deviate from the conventional path of truth, then I would do that as well. I had discussed the related ideas in my blog posts – Ideological vanity (click), My System of Ethics (click), An Ethical Brainteaser! (click) and How Morality is Indispensable to a Social Life (click).
When it comes to honesty, I can be quite extreme on either side of what might be considered the ‘optimum’ degree of honesty. How honest I am with a person depends on how much I value them. I can cook up believable stories very spontaneously and also speak them out with a straight face. I have played pranks using this skill of mine on few occasions, and at other times I did so to bail out myself from difficult situations. But on the other extreme, if I respect a person a lot, then I have decided in favor of being honest to utmost degree. My belief is, if I respect a person, then I must consider them as much deserving as myself to know the same truth that I would, and would also not doubt their ability to handle the truth, and the desire to know it.
2. My first crush was at the age of 5!
What I mean is, the girl was five! Okay-okay, I was also five, back then. Yes people, I was quite precocious! Perhaps, my hairline that’s merged with the forehead skin is merely another indicator of my precocity. Though, I must mention here that I had harbored that crush for the girl right from kindergarten to class 9. That is ten whole years! And yet, never could I gather sufficient courage to tell her that. Actually, her family had happened to be friends with mine, and I was worried that if she and in turn my parents were to get a whiff of it, I would be sent to 14 years vana vaas [exiled to forest], notwithstanding the absence of Manthara, Lakshman or Sita in my life. Later, I grew out of that crush, and am just about in touch with her. I wonder if I come to know of her being in some romantic relationship or planning to get married, would I still feel a pinch? Perhaps I would, but even that pinch would make me smile, just like most things from my childhood that I consider silly, would. As an aside, one of my female class mates during my MBBS course had commented in Hindi, “koi itni chhoti si umar se itna ‘woh’ kaise ho saktaa hai?” [How can someone be so 'that' from such a young age?]. I egged her on as to what she meant by ‘that’ (“‘Woh’ matlab?”). She said, “Samajh jaa na!”. So, I asked, “tharaki?” [Lecherous?]. “Haan wohi!” [Yes, that only!]. Now, I didn’t launch into an elaboration on how not all attractions need be tinged with libidinous desires, etc. That must have dented my reputation, at least she made it seem so, but quite possibly, it would have actually improved among girls! But either ways, I couldn’t be too bothered to find that out.
3. My crush list had consisted of 23 girls by the time I had turned 17!
I know that is quite an awesome figure… for detached onlookeers, that is! How many did I manage to pataaofy? None!
Again, quite a few girls take this figure as a sign of my being a loose gentleman [Do you see the contradiction in terms here? It ("loose gentleman") does not come out as well as "loose lady", right? But I have an explanation for that. Unlike what feminists would like to point out, this usage has nothing to do with inherent sexism. The answer lies in poetics - 'loose' and 'lady' are alliterations! ]. But that is not true. My reasons for getting a crush on some girl are very eclectic, but equally weird! So actually, it is quite an honor for a girl if I get a crush on her (duh!). E.g., once after I finished my meal in a restaurant, a girl was inadvertently blocking my way to the wash basin. I said, “Excuse me! Could you please make way for me?” She was visibly embarrassed, and said, “Oh, I’m sorry. Sure!” and gave a sheepish smile and got out of the way. Now of course, this would seem a normal occurrence, but those were the days when the girls in my junior college (class 12) were irritating enough to say haughtily “excused” in response to such requests (inspired by, who else, but Shahrukh Khan!) when in fact, it is they who would be blocking the way and thus be at fault! And lo behold, mujhe us pe crush aa gayaa (woh Hindi wala “lo” tha)! Ah so you see, this fine lady’s etiquette quite endeared her to me. And that I felt she looked good helped. But to be honest, I had hardly looked at her, so I can’t be sure. Maybe it was just her demeanor that made me feel that she looked good. I left the restaurant, feeling thumps in my chest, with this intense desire to go back and talk to her, to look at her face and her smile, to try to get her email ID or Yahoo! ID (those were the days I had been heavily into Yahoo! chatting), but alas, there was no pretext to do that! This helplessness disturbed me for a few days. And quite weirdly, if I were ever to meet her, I would not even be able to recognize her now!!! But that unmistakable feeling of warmth is not lost on me each time I try to recall that incident.
4. I can be quite poker faced (but the irony is I don’t like card games!).
This, anyway few of you must have guessed when I talked of making up stories with a straight face. But then there is a flip side, too. It seems that my feelings do not spill over onto my face (whatever that is supposed to mean!). So, if I am really happy, I have to convince others that I would be feeling very happy. Likewise, due to relatively subdued facial expressions, and also the fact that most people consider me quite composed (which I am most of the times), people do not believe me easily when I tell them that I would be feeling sad or troubled or anxious.
5. I have cried in public only once.
I cry with difficulty. I don’t know why. It is not that I look at adversely those who cry. In fact, crying can be quite therapeutic. But perhaps I would feel a loss of control if I let myself cry and show emotion. I am not so affected by the attention I might draw on crying, but even otherwise I cry extremely rarely. The last I had cried was after class 12 (which is more than 8 years back, and anyway was not in public).
It is for similar reason that I do not allow myself to show my anger, envy, irritation, etc. As I said, I am hardly bothered by what others think of me, but I do so because when dealing in public I feel people by default are firstly not ‘deserving’ of my emotion (including anger), meaning, I consider my true emotions the precious most things – that people have to reach crossing a few check points in order to be able to ‘access’ [apologies, if that sounds haughty]. Secondly, I feel if I act under the influence of some overwhelming emotion, then that would not be the best decision. This makes me quite a control freak, with the subject of that control being myself. So when I do experience some overwhelming emotion, most of my attention is focused on trying to buffer it, cut it out of my system, so outwardly quite obviously, people cannot make out what is going on inside of me, or even that indeed something significant is going on.
Okay, so the last time I had cried was in class 5! But many people to who I have recounted the incident find the reason behind it very silly. It had so happened that the girl with who I used to share my bench was in a mischievous mood. She was hitting me with my own compass box (metallic box in which I used to carry my writing/drawing material, etc.). She was miffed by the fact that I wasn’t getting angry. So to provoke me, she threw away my box at the wall around 5 m away in front of us. All the contents of the box had fallen out. But I went, collected the box and the items, replaced them and came back with my box. All along I had been requesting her to stop, but perhaps she was bent on testing my patience [unfortunately, I have noticed quite a few people I have met in life have wanted to break my resolve/composure/patience, perhaps because they think of it as some kind of challenge. But they do not understand that I have my personal reasons to be composed, and it is not that I do that to get some kick out of it]. Somehow, my only concern was how to stop her! It did not occur to me that I should get angry at her! In the meantime, she got hold of my some other stuff, and as I went to get it back from her, she took hold of my compass box and threw it again!!! It was actually food break that we used to get midway in the school’s time table, so there were hardly any other class mates in the room. Just one of my class mates who was watching all this came to me and told me something to the effect of: “how could you be so passive! If she threw your compass box, you too must throw hers!”. Now to be honest, even his words were not entirely convincing, because as I said I did not feel angry at all. My only concern was to get her to stop. But then I decided that perhaps he was right. If she had thrown my box, and that too twice, despite my warning and requesting her to not do the same, there was nothing wrong with my doing the same with hers! Moreover, I thought it would be an effective ‘strategy’ to stop her! But there was one problem – her box was made of plastic and it was beautiful (mine was ugly, apart from being metallic). So, I did not have the heart to throw it. But if I remember correctly, she was preparing to play yet another trick to try to gain control of my box and throw it again. So, in one quick motion, I took her box and threw it. Somewhat unexpectedly, one of the hinges of the box’s lid broke off from the main body. Now her box was defunct! She started crying, complaining that she had pestered her mom a lot to let her use that box, as it was actually a birthday gift to her six year younger brother, and that her mom would scold her a lot, and also her brother would be very heart broken. Suddenly, I felt very guilty of what I did. More so, because I too had an equally younger sister, and I knew how difficult it was to negotiate things out of parents! And I started crying – much harder than her, and quite inconsolably. I think the fact that my act was not backed my own conviction or emotions added greatly to my regret. I felt pathetic [the girl was done with her crying till then]. Soon, the break had ended, and all the students started coming into the class. It was quite an unusual sight for everyone, because nobody expected me to cry ever. In some time, our science teacher (who has been one of my all-time favorite teachers) entered. She inquired with others as to what had happened. She told me in Hindi, “Agar kisi ko sataana galat hai, toh us sataaye jaane ko sehanaa bhi galat hai” [If it is wrong to trouble someone, then it is also wrong to tolerate being troubled]. Now, again I wasn’t entirely convinced with that line of reasoning, but simply because it had come from a teacher I was so much in awe of, I thought she must be right! I apologized to the girl and also to the teacher. And no, that was not my tactic to escape punishment! I’m good at pretending to be normal, but I am not at all good at pretending to be crying!!!
With that incident I learned that unadulterated guilt is a very difficult feeling to handle for me. It is possible that only to escape that curse of guilt I have tried to develop a system of ethics, which I try to sincerely follow. For in matters of guilt, just like is with medical disorders, prevention is better than cure.
6. My favorite animal is cat.
Many classify people into ‘dog-person’ v/s ‘cat-person’. And somehow I do not even find the classification artificial. It does seem that most people are partial towards one and somewhat against the other. I find cats very cute-looking. There is an air of vulnerability in their round face and the way they ‘meow’. Perhaps, it inspires a protective instinct in me. But then, many dogs are also like that, and who I don’t find as much attractive. So what actually impresses me about cats is that despite this seemingly delicate frame, they are quite self-sufficient. Their agility is deceptive. Also, I like cats for their decisiveness, e.g., it is all too common to find dogs goofing up while crossing roads, and getting hurt/killed in the process. Many times they end up harming the motorists also, but cats are not like that. They cross roads quite easily. Another thing I like about cats is that they seem to be very curious – always exploring something or the other in their environs. I have read on the internet that to make blog posts interesting, we must include a few pictures. So here I post a few cute wall papers of cats I had downloaded from Wide wallpapers (click) in hope that my blog gets more popular and I get tagged more often.
Curious cat – still alive!
I as a child had been so fond of cats, that I used to try to imitate their sound. I used to see if I could attract some kitten towards me thus, trying to make it think I would be its mother! However silly it might sound, I try to do that sometimes even today. If I could understand cat language, I would really like to know how stupid do they find me for that (no, cat’s body language, e.g., scratching and biting does not count as cat language)!
An extremely significant outcome of my immense experience with attempts at ‘catiloquy’ (a la ventriloquy) is the conclusion and the tip I present here, that to best imitate a cat’s sound, one must say ‘v-ynaa-oon’ (with lot of nasal twang) instead of the flat ‘me-eow’ that is more popular. Do let me know your results when you try this!
7. I’m a very disorganized.
Very few people who know me through online contact might believe that, but that is indeed a fact. I like my thoughts well organized, but I do not maintain my material belongings the same way. I find it a waste of time to try to keep things in an orderly fashion, especially, if I would be needing them regularly.
8. I’m VERY afraid of cockroaches!
I have never been able to deconstruct my fear of cockroaches. Perhaps, it has got something to do with the inherent unpredictability of their trajectory and the suddenness of their movements. I’m particularly afraid of the flying variety.
9. I quite like violent (on ears) music.
Again, this might seem to go against my personality, but for some reason, one of my favorite kinds of music happens to be quite jarring. Examples are ‘Smack my bitch up’, ‘Spitfire’, ‘Breath’ (all three by The Prodigy), ‘Ich wil’ (Ramstein), ‘Let the bodies hit the floor’ (Drowning pool), ‘Calm like a Bomb’ (The Rage against the Machine) and ‘Dragula’ (Rob Zombie).
10. I’m quite averse to the idea of bathing.
And of course, that I do to conserve water… would be a prototypical lie. It’s because I’m plain lazy. I would think of bathing as a waste of time that could be better utilized to doing more productive things like tweeting/blogging/commenting on blogs or thinking up a new conspiracy theory!
One of my friends during my MBBS days had told his parents that on one occasion I had not had bath for 30 days! While I will not corroborate that number what I can say is that in terms of ‘order of magnitude’, he was not way off mark! But now I have somewhat mended my ways. My frequency has started approaching once a day, something that quite comforts my parents.
Oh, and did I mention it gets quite lonely in the bathroom! Except of course, if I would be given company by a flying cockroack! :O
11. In my childhood (till I was 7 years old) I wanted to become a watchman on growing up.
What used to impress me about the job was the watchman’s uniform. I also used to be awed by the fact that watchmen get to keep a stick with them, which they could use when needed, so everybody would be afraid of them!
Of course, with time I lost my fascination. Following that I sequentially wanted to become paleontologist, archeologist, geologist, astronomer, nuclear physicist, cell biologist (by which time I had reached class 12). Quite ironically, except for during my internship and some time following its completion I never really wanted to be a practicing doctor/surgeon!
12. I find ‘The Little Prince’ (click) a very cute story.
I have of course read only the English translation of this story originally written in French. Many sources mention that there is lot of profundity in the story and even small things are allegorical, in that they represent a commentary on (ridiculous) aspects of human behavior. But the part I like the best is where the Little Prince recounts how he had left his beloved flower back at his asteroid. He alludes to certain kind of vanity on part of the flower when she shows her thorns (claws) as if they were sufficient to defend her from the sheep that might eat her! Yet the Little Prince likes her, and strives to protect her! He loves her ‘just like that’ – for the heck of it! This, according to me was one of the most delicate representations of romantic love. It perhaps appeals to some carefree child hidden in me that wants to throw caution to the winds, embark on this journey of love without bothering to see what it gives back and what the journey entails – thus love becoming the end in itself in its truest sense.
13. I type out my blog post drafts in ‘HTML mode’!
I recently realized that this is a very weird thing to do. Of course, it is not a case that I do not know of the conventional mode to type them where what you see is what you get (wysiwyg). But I guess, this tendency stems from the fact that I like to be in control. If there is something that goes around me, and which I am unaware of, the very idea makes me uncomfortable. Of course, I use many electronic devices whose mechanism of working I’m unaware of. But in case of blogging, I like to keep the use of HTML at its minimum so that if I have to edit the drafts some time in the future, I would get an elegant composition as against one with many redundant tags (which typing in wysiwyg mode usually entails).
14. I am very fond of the Indian singer, Shaan.
In fact, Shaan (click) is the only celebrity I very strongly feel like meeting in person. One would be not wrong in calling what I used to (and to some extent, still) feel about him as infatuation (click)!
I won’t write much over here about him as I am sure to end up blogging about him in future.
15. I had been shown to a psychiatrist…
…Because my class teacher thought I was erm… mentally retarded! And my dad was also seemingly convinced. All this because I used to detest school work of any kind – be it studies or be it doing homework. I almost never used to copy down the notes that teachers would write on the black board as I used to find that pointless and boring.
I was made to undergo an IQ test in which I had done exceedingly well, putting to rest my dad’s concerns of my being a retard. The psychiatrist was really nice. I guess, since then, and especially because I got to meet two fabulous psychiatrists during my graduation, I seem to have developed a soft corner for psychiatry and psychiatrists.
c) Now coming to the difficult part – tagging others. As I am not sure how many more occasions would I get to tag others thus (owing to [ahem] my lack of popularity), I make maximum use of it, and tag as many people (bloggers as well as tweeters) as possible! And of course, I take this opportunity to sneak out some information off people I have always been quite curious about.
- Dr. S
- Wise Donkey
- Quirky Indian
- Darshan Chande
- Tumultuous Suspension
- Chiya/Garmia Dipti
- @raggedtag – tag completed (click)
I would have liked to tag Tangled up in Blue and Insignia also, but former has already done the tag, and latter I suspect to have done it in the past.
I would be happy if anyone else feels like taking up this tag, and please do inform me about it. .
I know quite a few of those mentioned above find silly the idea of taking up tags like above, to them I can only urge them to take this up because I am curious! Also, many of the tweeters mentioned here do not maintain a blog, but it would be nice if they could make one just for this once. Thanks all!
d) I will make sure that those tagged are informed about it.
PS: I will try to link to others’ tags as and when they complete it, and inform me of the same.