Year 2019 End Blog Post

So, the fastest year of life is over in a jiffy. I went to Goa in Jan 2018 and it feels like it was just a few weeks ago. That’s how fast the last 2 years have gone by.

There were many learnings this year work-wise. I have now completed more than a decade of working. It went pretty smooth for me for the first 7 years but the last 3 years have made me work as many hours as I worked in the first 7. There were numerous late nights and weekends. The amount of knowledge gained was also enormous. I also completed 5 years working in the same company. So, I have spent more time in office than in the rented house I am living in. Does this mean the office feels like home? Dangerous sign.

And, as much as you want to avoid, but someday politics catches you. But it is fun and challenging and as part of life as it can be. Bring it on!

As I observed, I have been the heaviest this year. Time to look into it in 2019. Better to go into new year with some aim.

Below are the things I enjoyed this year, like a normal human being.

Movies (In theatres)

The least number of movies I watched in Cinema this year.

TV

Movies

  • Movies by Edgar Wright – Scott Pilgrim and Trilogy of Ice-Cream and Blood
  • Article 15 – Dark and brilliantly shot
  • Section 375 – Gripping!
  • A Quiet Place – Goosebumps, silently. Brought back memories of Spielberg era

Series

  • The Office – I haven’t laughed as much I did while watching this in ages. I’m seriously! All hail Michael Scott and Dwight Schrute combo. Things do get weird in S8 but still so much better than all those shows with a laughter track after every 10 seconds. Each and every character in fact make you chuckle. It will be hard to miss. That’s what she said!
  • The Family Man S1 – Superbly made. I think all the things by the creators of this have been amazing.
  • Fleabag – Some 4th wall breaking done really brilliantly, the writing and the acting by the eponymous Phoebe Waller-Bridge is something else!
  • Stranger Things S3 – Still one of my most favorite shows. The ‘Never ending story’ part was the best.
  • Veep S7 – Cannot think of any other show which has so many jokes crammed into every dialogue that before you finish your laugh at one, another one comes which is even meaner. And this was the final season. Elaine, I mean, President Selina Meyer, what a performance!
  • Chernobyl – Highly recommended

Books

The following are the books I read this year. I had targetted one book a month but I ended up 2 short. Currently, I am reading Thinking Fast and Slow but it is not going to get finished in the next 3 days.

One thing I regret about the following books is that in spite of them being definitely life-changing, I didn’t change my life. I will have to read some of them again because they are definitely worth re-reads. Some of them tend to appear a bit lop-sided about growing old and understanding the world more. But then as I said I didn’t let them affect me in any positive or negative manner. One way to actually implement the learnings from the books is to go through them again via a book review which I didn’t do at all this year and that has to be corrected next year.

* All the above links are Amazon Affiliate Links.

Shravanbelagola

Year 2018 End Blog Post

*cough*

What a year 2018 has been! I mean, seriously. This year, I had some experiences which I have never felt in my life before. Most of the experiences were life-altering. I will come back to them later in this post but first, let us look at the so-called resolutions I had promised at the end of the last year. And their outcomes, of course. I don’t make resolutions-resolutions per se but everyone has some things in their minds they want to tick mark every year.

Here’s the breakdown of how my objectives of the year fared.

Resolutions 2018

  • Write daily. This is really important. Seth Godin, here I come.
    • Outcome: 33 blog posts. About 300 posts short but highest blog posts in a year by me, ever!
    • Verdict: Fail
  • Take more photographs. Edit them better. Make better stories. Be a better photographer, better editor.
    • Outcome: About 150 Instagram Posts. I crossed 1000 posts this year. And I didn’t use Photoshop this year at all.
    • Verdict: Pass
  • Be a better storyteller. Better speaker. Better. And don’t let anything distract you from that.
    • Outcome: I completed by Toastmasters Advanced Communicator Bronze which included Storytelling. So technically, yes! Still a long way to go.
    • Verdict: Pass
  • Indulge in Video making and editing. Tough task but time is now! Casey Neistat and likes keep inspiring and sharing new people to get motivated from.
    • Outcome: Video editing is a tough job. I didn’t start a Vlog yet but getting there slowly.
    • Verdict: Pass (barely)
  • Learn something new every week. New technology, science, history, word, technique, skills, something! And write about it.
    • Outcome: Huge scope in this task. I certainly could do a lot more. I will consider myself failed.
    • Verdict: Fail
  • I didn’t have an actual big cycle when I was a kid. I had a small kiddy bike until I was 13. But then my younger brother got a proper bike. So I used it. But not as much as I wanted. So, if all goes well, I will buy a Bicycle soon and just ride it.
    • Outcome: Big fail.
    • Verdict: Fail
  • Overhaul the overall brand. Come up as a person people should look up to. Learn from others. Teach what you know to others. Learn more, be more!
    • Outcome: Long way to go. It is better to stay perpetually fail as this.
    • Verdict: Fail
  • Basically, just do. Don’t complain. Don’t indulge in politics. Don’t share irrelevant details. Don’t consume bad stuff.
    • Outcome: Subjective thing. But I am still sane.
    • Verdict: Pass
  • Don’t intake negative vibes. Just do your thing and be better!
    • Outcome: Same as above
    • Verdict: Pass

Experiences

Chanakya wrote,

A man is born alone and dies alone; and he experiences the good and bad consequences of his karma alone; and he goes alone to hell or the Supreme abode.

Karma is a funny thing. It is certainly the outcome of your actions which you deliberated yourself or someone made you do it. Nevertheless, you must face them at some point in your life. The year 2018 left me with some experiences (which were not my doing necessarily but still I had to face) which were quite new. I am going to jot down these experiences in the classy Health-Wealth-Wise trio format which made me ponder about life a bit more than I would have. This is going to be somber like all previous year-end posts.

Health

I traveled to Goa in the beginning of the year and needless to say I was not interested in sharing my beach pics. I have put more pressure on the weighing scales this year than I ever have. Some of this could be blamed on me living alone for 5 months and using Zomato, Swiggy, and FreshMenu to the fullest. I was, in fact, happy to note that Google Pay got me a lot of cashbacks. But then I fell sick later in the year so the medicines evened out the cashbacks. The silver lining was that I was able to keep the clothes still fit my waist. This sounds all negligible experience actually. This is not life-altering by any stretch of the imagination, to be honest. In more seriousness, the truth is that most of us take health for granted. Only when either we ourself or someone close falls ill, then only we understand the importance of taking care. Some of the people around me kept on falling sick or fell into the trap of diseases which are life-threatening. Even if when you are not suffering yourself, when people around you suffer, that hurts a lot, if not equally. And the fact that one cannot do anything about it, is a tough bullet to chew. To say the least, healthwise 3 of the major experience happened to me this year was:

  1. Having to take someone to a hospital in an ambulance when they had just collapsed and getting to know that it was the case of D.O.A.
  2. Still dealing with the ongoing ordeal of a close one suffering from the monster called Cancer. It sucks the life out of one in all possible ways but you still have to deal with it.
  3. Got to hear about someone giving up on life due to Depression. Enough said.

Wealth

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Till July of this year, I went to the Airport every month. Sometimes, more than once a month. I am not at all a frequent traveler but circumstances made me do it. That also brings me to the fact that, one, everyone knows how painful it is to travel to Bengaluru airport so many times, and second, the amount of money which gets consumed in traveling is immense. People get so much impressed by Travelogs but what about unplanned travels? Who budgets that? So, the first experience was to think about money. Frankly, I have never paid any attention to it. I have been privileged enough to not to worry about it, yes! But also, how much more do I need to be more responsible and be ready for the unplanned things. I finally started investing. Nothing fancy but even investing in FDs and RDs was the first time for me. (I am so posh or what?). But seriously, I should have started this a decade ago. The one thing nobody teaches properly is how to use your money. Those who actually professionally teach have ulterior motives I guess. One important thing I did this year though was to travel to Shravanbelgola and attend the once in 25 years Mahamastakabhishek in proper attire. I don’t know if I will ever get a chance like this.

Wise

With all of the learnings from above, the only take away is that we don’t really have much time. How we spend the time we have makes us who we are! We can get bothered about the events on social media or politics, or we can try to make small differences in anyone else’s lives. We can either Netflix and chill (and that is important too to stay sane but in limited quantity) or we can try to boost confidence and morale of someone by sharing a good positive quote or just talking and listening to them. We can stay in one place or travel.

All in all, 2018 was a somewhat unusual year which sets the tone of future too. But since we have less time in our hands, we can try to be optimistic and just do something about it than letting life happen to us.

The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails.
– John Maxwell

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Year 2016 End Blog Post

2016 is almost about to end, finish, over, poooof!! YAY!

Now, for some reason, I don’t understand what the hoopla was about. Bad things happened this year, sure, but that happens every year and this is going to continue to happen next year as well. Probably, I don’t feel as impacted as supposed to, by most of the things which happened this year, as I transitioned from being, how to put it mildly, Sngl to Mrrd in January itself. Once you have made that change in your life, every other impact feels like falling off a 1 KG metal ball or a feather in space.

So, as goes the tradition, this is the year-end summary blog post for 2016. Some major things are summarized below so that I can read the same 10 years from now (if all goes well):

  • January was something. Apart from the D-Day, I also stepped outside Indian soil. And landed on a semi-Indian soil. And it was fun.

 And the events that followed after Jan’s main event, have been fun alright! For the first time in my life, I got to live alone. Like actually alone. Sounds very weird after the first 2 points but that is how it was. I lived alone for about 8 months, with occasional visits from friends and family. But living alone gives you some perspective in life which nothing else does. I recommend, everyone should live alone for a month of two, at least. I played a whole lot of Pokemon Go for 1 week, before those idiots took it down. Around mid-year, I joined Toastmasters. One, to slow myself down. Second, to become a better public speaker. The journey has been super exciting as having an aim in life, a purpose, gives you a lot to look forward to. Also, the club gives you an environment which one craves for in a job, that it is not just rewarding, but also competitive and that school-college-classroom feel is there. However, I don’t know how much have I improved as a public speaker, I surely have become more open to talking to any number of people. I would go in more confident now, as compared to past. There are still many glitches to overcome, but we shall do that in 2017. And yeah, I have completed the CL Manual, and very soon, I would be a Competent Leader officially. Yes!

I got the opportunity to visit Gokarna for the first time, and Ooty for the 2nd. But, I couldn’t give myself much time to click photographs, so there is one things I missed out on. I should have clicked more.

I moved to a new place. After spending full 6 years in the most North Indian part of Southern Bengaluru, I moved to Eastern Central Bengaluru. I am going to totally miss, Bun, Tea and Momos. And the people there which made the place worth living. Last but not the least, I had my first ever and the most severe, Bike accident. I had forgotten that Bengaluru’s roads have potholes and I drove in to one. Bike toppled, as did I. Luckily, only bike’s headlight got broken and my right hand got muscle sprained. Nothing bad happened. But my right hand is still recuperating. I got to wear that protective sling thingy for the first time ever. Hopefully, I will remember how to ride on roads in this country.

Have I changed? Yes, to a certain extent. I have realized that time doesn’t stay the same always even when it seems to have frozen for some time. And most importantly, life after marriage is fine. It only seems dangerous till you haven’t done that.

2017, bring it on!

Roundup 2014

Well, 2014 is over before you could even spell it out. It got over as quickly as your weekends get over if you sleep a little extra. Here’s my round up of 2014 just for the sake of documenting my life for future biography and also for blogging’s sake which I am continuing since last 7 years or so (Don’t know why).

I know you weren’t able to follow through on your resolutions, as always and same way, 2014 was quite an eventful year for me as well. I ticked off a few things from my bucket list as completed and deleted (moved into Sour Grapes Category) a few. Putting them into bullet points to make the post look longer and more readable:

  • Things like buying a motorcycle and getting a new job in a company which was my favorite company during a particular week in 2005 (since I am working here now, masha-allah, it still is) was successfully accomplished. This sounds like very archaic but it is not.
  • Apart from the usual yada yada, we all became more Cynical (High 5! Wait no, Low 5!), gained some more weight and pissed off more people than getting pissed off by.
  • I also got into Twitter debates (Yes, this was the all-important polarizing, divisive election year so I have made it large finally but still as a faileb) and got called names, one of which rhymes with the phrase ‘ You are so Cute yeah!’.
  • Got my name published in some newspaper/website for posters (again), which is a surprisingly good thing that it is still going on like 2012.
  • Got into the act of hitting and getting hit on to reassure my belief that I am still a human. (Who was the idiot who devised this act of flirting to be called as Hitting? Weird.)
  • Talking of the point above, I did manage to ruffle some feathers by not giving in to the process of spamming FB with photos of weddings and honeymoons. Yet. So you still have a chance. But you had this chance for years, no? Useless fellows.
  • Although, I couldn’t go on any world tour because of my busy schedule of sleeping on weekends (what have I become!), but I did sneak a 2 day weekend visit to Pondicherry, which was a good pleasant time and gave me a lot of pics to Instagram.
  • Also, I met Sidin Vadukut (who doesn’t want to meet him and ask about Whale joke, which I did ask BTW) at Bangalore Literature Festival. Also, I attended a concert by Shreya Ghoshal which I left midway because it was dinner time while she was singing and everyone knows what our priorities are. I met many other Twitter/Blogger friends too and got into lovely chit chat which could have gone for hours and hours but that can happen some other time too.
  • Talking of dinner, I am giving up all my hopes on Vegetarian food. Man, can’t we think of anything else than Paneer. I am fed up of Paneer. Seriously you guys. Potato which used to be my favorite food item on Earth, is being seriously under-used in this part of the world and mostly my household.
  • I am bored of Acche Din, already. I mean, whatever Govt. is doing good, that would not show results in at least 2 years. And whatever Govt. is doing bad, like not shutting up so-called-Nationalists is getting more attention. And, fed up of seeing Mr. Narendra Modi on TV, Newspaper, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Radio, Roads, etc all the time.
  • I am not going to promise myself the same thing I am promising myself since these last 7 years to blog and write more but I will just say that I will try…

This sums up the year 2014 for me. Let’s see what 2015 brings!