Day 2# – Infinity

I heard this in a TV show today.

Why is there a word to describe the concept of infinity, when we are actually incapable of understanding it?

This really got me thinking. Life isn’t forever. Anything you earn does not stay with you forever. What is forever then? If nothing is forever then change is the only thing that lasts. I guess infinity is constant and continuous change. Everyone and everything go through it and that’s the way of life.

I’m from India and I realised a few days ago that I didn’t know much about my culture or about the cultures of those around me. I guess I was in a mood for something deep and meaningful because life has been feeling meaningless for quite some time. So I looked up the Dalai Lama. Even though it’s all associated with Tibet, it still felt quite close to home.

They have many interesting things that are discussed in their religion. Buddhism is by far the most interesting religion I’ve come across. I’m a Hindu and I know a lot of Christians and Muslims. I’ve heard all the lore and just all of it. Right from Jesus to Prophet Muhammad and Krishna. I thought all of that was incredible. But Buddhism only intrigued me more.

One of the things that caught my eye was the sand mandala. I might be wrong. But what I understand is that it’s this intricate design that is made from coloured sand. This design is blueprinted to the millimetre and to the milligram of sand to be used. It takes a long time and a lot of effort to make it. And they create this beautiful thing only to rub it all away till it reduces to nothing but dust. It is to symbolise that nothing is forever. Life, however beautiful it is will reduce to ashes some day. That doesn’t have to be a bad thing even if it’s not a great thing. It’s just how it is.

Even the Dalai Lama himself. They choose a new reincarnation after one passes away. The teacher is always evolving and so are the teachings.

I guess what I take from this is that. Pain or joy, nothing is forever. So it doesn’t have to affect you the way it does. These things don’t have that much power over you. It’s how you choose to look at it. You can keep what you like and ignore what you don’t think you want for your life and things will still be just fine. Because everything will pass.

At the end of the day we have only one life that is guaranteed. We don’t know if there’s another side. So we might as well live this one to the fullest. Right?

– The Obsessive Writer

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Travel Blog 3# – My First IPL (CSK vs SRH at Pune, Maharashtra)

You Americans have your NFL, your NBA and your baseball. And then there are all those football clubs with fans all over the world who worship either Ronaldo or Messi. But here in India, we’re all about the cricket. One of my very first posts on this blog all those years ago when I started writing, was about cricket. I’m not much of a sports person. I enjoy the outdoors and the fun in games. But the passion for cricket has nothing to do with that. Cricket is something that brings every Indian family together and that’s why it’s become so important to so many of us. Cricket is something I share with my Dad who I have a very close relationship with. Going to this game with him was a wonderful experience altogether. I’m always up for some father-daughter bonding. 😀

The World cup games are serious. There’s a lot riding on them. The Indian Premier League or IPL is the fun version of this battle. We have several teams that consist of local Indian as well as foreign players from countries like Australia, New Zealand, England and South Africa. There are 8 teams currently and each team is named after a particular city. These teams are owned by companies and individuals. These matches are often friends battling each other for the esteemed IPL cup. And this is what makes it extra fun. Who wouldn’t love to watch the Indian Cricket team fight against each other when we’re so used to watching them play together in the World cup and T20 series games?

I’m from Tamil Nadu so naturally the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) are the ones who represent my state. But the fans of CSK are spread throughout the country because the captain of CSK happens to be the most beloved ex-captain of the Indian Team, Mahendra Singh Dhoni. He’s not just a great cricketer, he’s known for his humbleness and overall character. Having witnessed all that in person I can vouch for him myself. “Captain Cool” as we call Dhoni, is the nation’s favourite. And so CSK has the biggest fan base in the country.

Going to a home game of their favourite team is something any sports lover would enjoy. And this wasn’t just any home game. This was a home game against our biggest competitor – The Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) . It was undoubtedly the most epic evening of my life.

All the flights from Coimbatore (where I live) to Pune had terrible timings. So I departed at around 2:45 AM early in the morning. It was a long night. And after that, the next day, we put all the woes of uncomfortable travelling aside and set for our journey to the stadium where the match was going to take place. Just before we got into the taxi we were joined by some unwelcome guests who decided to “share” our ride without really being invited.

The crampy ride in the tiny car only got worse with the increasing traffic. I did not expect the roads to be so shitty and I definitely did not expect for the driver to be shittier. The IPL is played for 20 overs with each over having 6 balls. Each team bats for 20 overs with the other team bowling and they try to beat each others score. CSK won the toss and decided to bat second so it was SRH that batted first. We literally missed the first 8 overs of SRH’s batting. I was vexed and heart broken. The game was also going very bad for our team during these overs. So it was not looking very good. We spent a lot of money on this trip for just two days for one game. It wasn’t even all about the money. It’s not fun when it seems like you might be losing your first game.

Did I mention the shitty roads? We got to the stadium after ages and even after that we had to walk through piles of stones and garbage to get to the actual stadium entrance. The whole path was laid out so poorly and managed inefficiently. It’s a miracle we even got to the entrance without getting trampled. You’d wonder why the Chennai Super Kings had their home ground at Pune instead of Chennai, the city it is named after. Well that is because of some annoying politics and gullible people who follow the words of those politicians and caused misguided riots at the stadium in Chennai. So due to security concerns the matches at Chennai were moved to Pune.

I was mad at everyone. Starting from the unwelcome guests who shared our ride, our shitty driver who had no skill to even switch between lanes, and the idiots who caused the riots and moved the match so far away to Pune which had the worst stadium at the worst possible location.

As mad as I was, it was all replaced by awe and excitement as soon as we entered and got to our seats. We had AMAZING seats. I was right behind the bench where our players sat. We were so close to the ground. I’ve never seen so many celebrities at once in my life. And they were so good at the game.

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SRH batting at the Maharastra Cricket Association Stadium

The first thing I noticed was how tiny the ground actually was. It might look big in this picture and it always looked huge to me on TV too. But in person, I’ve got to say. Not at all what I expected. And the players were HUGE. Compared to the normal sized umpires they were like giants. Dhoni especially.

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The Chennai Super Kings retreating from the ground after they’ve finished bowling.

The first half of the game was over soon. It was not at all looking good for us. All we could do was stay optimistic. SRH has been playing really well this season. They’ve defended scores as low as 118 to victory. But this time they had set a high target of 180. It seemed like a very easy game for them to win.

We were seated behind the bench and in front of the players lounge. So if they needed refreshments or even a place to sit they had to come behind us and our row could see them up close. Most of the time people were just sat turned around staring at the lounge instead of the actual game and some newbie players like Lungisani Ngidi really seemed to love the attention. Then there were some like Jadeja and Bravo who ignored their devoted fans like they were somehow beneath them. I guess all that cheering gets annoying after you’ve been famous for so long. They could have also not wanted to distract the audience from the actual game. And then there was Dhoni. The poor guy was ducking for cover from his fans who managed to spot him through the glass walls of the lounge. They kept chanting his name as if that would make him come out. After he realised they weren’t going to stop he gave them a quick wave and ducked back into cover to make sure he wasn’t stealing any attention.

The thing is no matter how hard he tried to avoid it, he got all the attention. It was hilarious sometimes. An entirely different player would have scored a six and the entire crowd still chanted Dhoni’s name like him sitting in the chair was a bigger accomplishment than Shane Watson’s 6. I felt bad for the other guys sometimes. But towards the end of the game I kind of realised why Dhoni has such a religious following. His number 7 jersey was the most popular outfit that every single CSK fan had on.

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Dhoni’s number 7 jersey everywhere.

The crowd went wild every single time one of the players hit a six or a four. They went even wilder when someone scored a wicket. The went WILDEST when the cameras were directed their way. Everyone wanted a bit of the limelight. 😀 The best way to get yourself caught on camera is to make a lot of noise and bust out some moves.

The second half of the game with CSK’s batting was very intense. There was a thin line between winning and losing and everyone was on the edge of their seats. At that nerve wrecking moment, Dhoni’s powerful strike which landed an amazing six sent the crowd wild. It was the highlight of the match and it honestly made all the troubles of getting there worth it. Because I got to see it in person.

The match went on in a much more positive way than it started out for us. And somehow our guys managed to pull a victory out of their hats. I felt like I was a part of something huge. Something bigger than myself. There were tens of thousands of people supporting their respective teams in unison by executing crowd waves and perfectly coordinated chants. To belong. Isn’t that what we all want? Sports is the best way to do just that.

We were in the last and final moments that decided whether we were going to win or lose. Dhoni and Ambati Rayudu were the two batsman in the field and Ambati was very close to a 100. It was Dhoni’s turn to bat and he could have easily hit a six and finished the game early. But that’s not what he did. He wasn’t just famous for his amazing shots. He was an even better person than he was an amazing cricketer. He hit a single run and gave Ambati the chance to hit his maiden century and only when he was done hitting his century, Dhoni finsihed the game with the final shot.

This is what the people love. Ambati was the one who hit a hundred runs but the crowd loved Dhoni more for being the kind of person who would give his opportunity to someone else, a budding player like Ambati to help him reach greater heights in his cricket career.

The match had the perfect ending where we won. It was a great moment. After that the crowd started fanning out and the stadium got quite empty.

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The Maharastra Cricket Association Stadium after the match

The media was getting it’s statement from the important players of the match and everyone was congratulating Dhoni. He treated them all alike. Right from the rich businessmen who sponsored him , to the reporters and even the low level maintenance guy who cleaned the ground after the game.

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The Reception Banner for CSK outside the stadium

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Sweaty, dirty but happy me ft. a CSK cap.

This was a game to remember. I’m officially a Dhoni fan. Not that I wasn’t one before but I’m even more sold on the guy now. I never in a million years thought I’d have the time to go to a game. I’m glad I did. It was a “Legend—–wait-for-it——-dary” kind of night.

– The Obsessive Writer

Travel Blog #2 – My College trip to Mysore, India.

It was an emotional time both because it was going to be my last college trip and also because I was having a hard time with life in general.

I was and still am so busy with college. That’s why I haven’t been writing as much as I used to. I’ll be back here in a few weeks time. And well, this trip was a very welcome break. I was quite reluctant to take it at first and I might have even been quite salty during the trip 😀 but I’m glad I did.

If you’re wondering why I was salty, just imagine sharing a hotel room with your TEACHER. Yikes. It was too much information for me to be around to watch her bodily functions and the happenings of her personal life. 😐 Listening to my teacher talk to her mother on the phone while in our room totally changed my perspective on her. She was this strict, authoritarian professor who took no shit from no one. But getting all up close and personal has made her a lot more human in my eyes. She’s not THAT bad I guess.

There was some epic class bonding as always. People who had their noses buried in books all day let loose and tried to have fun. It was nice seeing a different side to everyone. It always happens I guess. When a group of people are thrust together and forced to coexist, they go from classmates to friends. Survival buddies if you will.

For those of you who do not know, Mysore is a city rich in culture and vast beauty. It has marvelous architecture. Maybe even some of the best you’ll see in India.

We went to the Mysore Palace. The royal family still lives here. It was like an underrated Taj Mahal of sorts.

And then we went to the head quarters of Infosys at Mysore. It’s a software company. And it put the palace to shame. Have a look and you’ll understand why!

I don’t understand in what world people get to work in places like this. I mean, if it were me. I wouldn’t be able to sit inside and look at a computer screen all day. I’d probably be out in the campus all day gawking at how beautiful everything looks.

So if you ever go to Mysore, whether you visit the palace or not, make sure you visit the Infosys headquarters. 😀

We also went to the zoo. It was hilarious because we were way too old for a place like that. 😀 But I love animals so I didn’t really mind.

– The Obsessive Writer

No

She might wear a tiny dress,

Trot around like a hot mess.

She might be the type

That’s all about the hype.

She might even have a drink,

Giving everybody something to think.

But,

Bare skin isn’t an open invitation,

For narrow minds to jump to conclusions.

Her attire may not be by your books.

There’s more to a woman than how she looks.

No simply means no.

And that is all you vultures need to know.

© Abirami

Magician’s Code

Lights on. Centre stage. Crowd cheers. It was his golden age. 

They believed in his magic. 

Curtains close.  Only he knows. 

And the politician stepped off the dias victorious yet again. “The freebies get ’em every time.”, he thought. 

© Abirami

Be Heard!

I find myself typing away at my laptop a lot recently. I wonder if it is because my school re-opens shortly and I won’t have time to anymore. Around here 12th grade is like the end of the world. Not a soul looks at it like another year at school. Perhaps, it is special, because its the senior year of high-school, the final step before you move off to college and everything but that’s not really why they make a huge deal out of it here.The 12th board exam is like the most serious thing that happens every year. It’s a bigger deal than the elections! Getting through the ordeal they make out of it is like crossing the seven oceans without a boat. I see this huge impenetrable mound of textbooks…I look away and focus on my writing for now. 

Coming back to the post, I’ve a question for you.

Why do you think we’re here?

We all have a purpose in life. A destiny chosen by our fate and all that crap which is not what I’m talking about. This is more of a basic, preliminary purpose of our life. A life that ends without having made a difference is a pointless one. That difference every ambitious soul out here wants to make needs a voice, and the loudest one is heard. 

The most popular topic of recent times are the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in India. All the voters out there, isn’t this a nice time to use that voice of yours? I never really write about controversial topics if I can help it but, this controversy is sort of embedded into my life. Having a politician for a Dad makes you have an opinion or two. I see them here everyday campaigning for their party out loud with their colorful banners afloat. It’s either criticizing the opposing party or exaggerating their own capabilities. The false promises are sometimes so obvious. Yet, we don’t lose hope. The mass population holds on to the hope that there are a few good people out there who really do want to change the world. The promise in the air seems so fragile with a majority of the population being succumbed to the bribing tactics of our very sly wannabe leaders. Votes, how easy are to procure you ask? It is as easy as “donating” a household appliance. In a way the world is not even affordable lately but then in another way it’s getting as cheap as shit. No wonder all the young minds in the population strongly disapprove of any involvement in politics. 

The NOTA (None Of The Above) option in the voting system is becoming increasingly popular among the first time voters. Being another fellow teenager I know how easy it must be to not have to think about who is less corrupted and simply just voting for nobody. But, if you ask me, that’s not really the smart thing to do. The teenagers of today are the future, aren’t they? Where do you think this world is going to end up if all you care about is keeping your hands clean and minding your own business. It is your country too. More than anyone else, you are capable of bringing about the most radical change. What happens when the actual doers just want to sit back and watch the show? There will be no change, will there? Isn’t it kind of ironic that, just because you want to be cautious of choosing the wrong person you are ready to give up the right to pick the right person? When none of us are ready to trust the middle-old aged public to even influence us and our lifestyle, how is it that you’re okay with them deciding the fate of your country? 

A little over 20% of the total electorate consisting of 814 million are of the age 18-25. 20% may not seem like a lot, but you’d be surprised about the amount of change you can make in this country with that 20%. The remaining 80% consists of:

a) Fragile minded people who can easily be bought. All they care about is temporary well-being due to their poverty ridden state. The less fortunate people who are easier to take advantage of.

b)The relatives of the candidates participating in the election or simply just involved in the party who have a very biased idea on who to vote for. 

c)”Not-so-fragile but happen to be pretty sly and are very keen on selling their votes”-people. 

d)The reliable ones who actually vote with the right intentions in their mind. But, unfortunately that is a very small number. 

When you just decide to keep your hands clean and let the rest of the country take responsibility for the leaders they choose, I’d suggest you first look at the reality of situation. The idea behind NOTA was to ensure no foul play using the votes of citizens who didn’t vote. It’s only goal is to keep record of the population that normally doesn’t vote. A series of delusions have led to the idea that this is some how a way to free yourself from the burden of choice. By not making a choice, you are still to blame for leaving the country’s fate out there to be taken advantage of. 

I guess in a way, I’m campaigning too. Pushing you to make a choice and not simply stay out of the race! what’s the fun in that? Having the power to decide who rules you is a basic necessity. Why give that up? We live in a world where the teenagers of today spend a fair amount of time choosing between brands and nail polish colors. Wanting the best is what we all have in common. If you spend all that time making those little choices. I bet you’d want to think way harder for things like this. Bigger things.You’re all given a voice. It is your choice to speak up and be heard or simply be another fragment in the echo. In a previous post I went on to give a detailed theory on how our choices make us who we are. So, does that make you a “none of the above”? You might want to think about that.