ArpitGarg's Weblog

An opinion of the world around me

Posts Tagged ‘friends

Same Same but Different

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Last night I had this amazing dream. I woke up at night with lights flashing all over. A man with big mustache and vintage golden dress was standing tall, over me, and laughing loud. “Wake up, you lazy bugger, Wake up”. Sleepy and startled, my first reaction was to blame it on the overdose of Vodka that night. But soon the gravity of the situation or can I say the lack of it dawned on me. Aaj toh lag gayi Mamu!

He told me I was dead. Died of a certain Gastropathic attack. Gas! Couldn’t it have been something legendary?  Like being attacked by flying dragons while jumping of a plane which collided with a UFO. Leave it.  I died of Gas alright.

Here I was, one moment trying to realize my dreams, my future and the very next facing the shock of my demise. My whole life flashed before my eyes. Family, Friends, Future. What now? I begged, pleaded with my soul transporter. Let me live to make things work, make things right.

It’s hard to say that it was my lucky day, given that I just died. But he took pity to me which clearly didn’t seem to match his M.O.  “There’s one condition though”, said he. “Here it comes” “Give me a reason to let You live.  Hey it’s easy, “I have so much left to do in my life. Get married. Make a career. Have kids”. He gave me a smile. “You don’t seem to get my question. Why should I let You and not some other person, live”

I was just an answer away. Given that I have been writing exams all my life, it shouldn’t have been that difficult. But believe you me, however hard I tried, I couldn’t get an answer.

Have you ever thought? Trying to make a mark in life, a place for ourselves, we have ended up being clones of each other. Lost that very individuality that we have been craving for, fighting for. When I look outside my apartment all I see is blinking stars. Only they are not stars, they are other apartments. We are all boxed up. All flats look same. All work looks same. All roads look same. All blokes look same. How is my life any different to my fellow men?

Well, it only seems logical that we all be same. The funda of evolution revolves around learning and surviving. We learn from others, grab the best of all and apply to our lives. Thereby becoming a hybrid.

With the advent of cut throat competition, this cloning process has only hastened. Don’t you remember your mother/wife saying, “Pados waale Sharma ji jo TV laaye hain humein bhi wohi chaiye” Or a kid crying that he wants the new Play station which his friends have. You covet other mans wife, car, house, life.

If we look at it the other way round, “What’s the problem in being clones” After all we are all born humans. Same at birth. Same creator. Same creation. Why is the need to be different? Just that it doesn’t seem all that right to be part of a monotonous system. It just seem what can I say, unnatural.

The similarity doesn’t end with the lives we tread; it follows us to our grave. However hard we have tried to make our post-death ceremonies different, the truth is, after a certain point, nothing but dust remains.

Anyhow, I was not able to answer the question of the big mustached guy. Good that it was just a dream. Am not sure what I had done for real.  Not even sure I really do care to be all that distinctive. I might try now and then, something out of the blue to be different. Might also be successful at that for a while. Till someone decides to catch up and steal my thunder of course.

Redemption

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I shook hands with and hugged a number of people today. I was in my hometown for holidays and fortunately it coincided with one of my schoolmates wedding. We being family friends were invited to the marriage.

Just a bit of background. I wasn’t all too social guy at school. Didn’t even know the names of many from my class. I can laugh at it today but I was a suck-up to the teachers and evidently not very popular among fellow students. It has been 7 long years since I passed out of school and haven’t had time to catch up with any of my mates barring a few close ones.

Normally I hesitate going up to someone, shaking hands and initiating a talk. The same reason why I don’t consider myself an MBA material. Anyways, today was a day to set things right. I entered the arena just as the Baraat was entering. A bunch of people were dancing. I recognized one of them to be an old pal. I shook hands and hugged. It was not exactly nostalgic but discovering. More so for a person like me, who never took a chance to socialize with people when had time.

Anyways, I met not less than two dozen old mates. Some married, some bachelors and others somewhere in between. I took the lead in going up to people with, “Saath mein padte the yaar, naam yaad nahin aa raha”. Not remembering was a lame excuse; I never really knew the names of many people in the first place. They were mere faces for me. But I was happy and guilt ridden at the same time when most of them replied, “Don’t worry we remember your name, Arpit”.

I stayed till late, chatting, relishing old times. Wish I could have chatted with you guys more. But it was a nice little start. Thank you all for remembering my name when I was so pathetic as to not remember your’s. And above all thanks to my friend whose marriage gave me a chance to meet old pals. Best wishes to him.

College: A place to make friends

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I completed my graduation recently and have taken up a job. The transition phase of life is as complicated as it is exciting. It’s not as if, I had to move for the first time. It’s just that the four years at college imparts stability and in that sense a settling feeling to life. Moving away from the cozy spaces of college to the material world is not as easy as it sounds. It’s not just the college and the hostel room you are leaving behind, it’s far more complicated than that.

At college you begin as a fresher, go through various facets of life, learn zillion things or as they say mature. During the first year you meet a lot of people. Slowly and steadily you find your own comfort space and the people who you are comfortable with. We call them friends. You live a lot of lives with them; you die a lot of deaths with them.

There are times when you are happy and you party with friends. There is time when you all plan a mischief and execute it nervously and then it becomes a routine. They are the people who, even if screw you, you share a laugh with them on your being screwed. The first time when you were holding a drink and you hands were shaking, there were friends who too had shaky hands but gave you a zillion fundas and spoiled you and got spoilt in return. You shared the first smoke with them and had GD over the first adult film you saw. They consoled you when you were down. They carried you on their shoulders when you a bit a too drunk. You shared each and every secret of your life with them. They were your teachers, they were your students. This can go on endlessly.

All of these are not things that one can just brush aside. They remain an integral part of memory which remains etched in forever. A lot has been written over friendship and a lot would be written in future. For me it’s one of the strongest relationships in life. There are times when it goes sour. But when you are in deep trouble you know that there are friends you can bank upon. This for me sums it up.

Written by arpitgarg

November 25, 2008 at 11:52 am

Is life really this amusing?

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Whenever my friends used to tell some interesting incident of their life, I was always like, “O! God Why have you never done anything so cool in my life?” Really people, this has been one of my greatest regrets, I have nothing interesting to tell. I never understood why and how people have so much interesting to tell? Let me jot down a few of such things which my friends told me, that were quiet fun and unique.

  • One of my friend never forgets what his dream was last night. He can explain you his dream in such detailed interesting fashion that you feel like “Well dreams are such fun. Why do I never remember them?”
  • Many of my friends have interesting tales about the holidays they spent in their ancestral village. I always feel like a “Joey”, whenever some one is telling such a story. The tales of old havelis, bonfires, gang fights. I could never believe that they do happen outside movies. But so do people say!
  • One of my friend stopped visiting his ancestral village, coz his parents were worried that his aunt (who lives in village) would feed him poison coz she didn’t have a son. I shook my head in utter disbelief. He said his parents were damn worried.
  • Once when I was sitting in a friends room at college. A colleague came rushing in asking us to google out the number of Chapra (Bihar) S.P, coz their has been an attack on his family and he wanted to instruct the SP to take care of the situation till he reaches the home. (Not that I want such a thing to happen to me, but still…something close to that would do)
  • A couple of my friends used to play with used contraceptives and fill them up with water and swing them like balloons. (I still wonder, was I so dumb that it never occurred to me?)
  • One of my friend used to play with snakes and bats since childhood. I was sure that he was faking, when one day, he caught a flying bat with a towel and put it in a jar in front of us. We were like stunned. Then he captured a couple more.
  • One of my friend had very interesting characters in his neighborhood. One was a guy who used to rub under his arm and then smell his palm. Other was a shopkeeper who used to fight with his own children as to who would drink the sip of pepsi that the last customer have left in the bottle. Another one was a African guy, who went mad when people called him “Kaalu”.
  • One of my friends had a personal stalker, now would you not long to have one for yourself. How unfair God.
  • One of my friends’ family tried to get him engaged when he was in college. The girl’s (with whom my friend was to get engaed) sister who was also married to my friends’s cousin was putting emotional pressure on him (my friend was in first year of bachelors at that time). The need for such a hurry was that the girl was 5’10 or 5’11 something and her family knew that finding well educated suitable groom would be hell of a problem and my friend is 6’2. He had to do something fishy to get out of it. I mean wouldn’t it have been interesting, at least a tale to tell, if it would have happened to me. But shucks, I am not 6’2.
  • All of my friends have had atleast one such childhood fight (fight bole to ekdum dishum dishum waali), that they still cherish to remember, but not me. God has been so cruel to me that I never as much slapped someone in my school as far as I remember. No broken tooth, no bruised leg, no black eye, no swollen forehead. Being fat also didn’t help. As they say, “Fat people are very jovial and don’t fight”. Neither can they flight nor can they chase you down.

It’s not that my life has been totally void. It’s not the case. I have had my share of fun, my share of smiles, my share of cries, my share of naughtiness, and my share of tries. But the incidents have been nowhere close to the ones cited above. When my friends used to tell me their stories, they didn’t seem true to me; so much so that I used to think that they are faking most of it. But over the years I have learnt that maybe not having any such amusing incidents in my life at all, makes my life all together differently amusing.

Written by arpitgarg

September 4, 2008 at 11:06 am

Dreaming again 3: Friends For Sale

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We had an unexpected break this Thursday. The lecture got cancelled (quite an anomaly!). Medical problem, I guess. It’s one hell of a problem in this side of the world, more so, if you are an outsider. I myself took time adjusting to the local weather, had to be medicated a couple of times. This takes me back a couple of years, when I snubbed the CMO, IITG. God! What a prig I was.

“…how to compute the probability…given the…we try to uncover the hidden part of the model…”

The nodding goes on as usual. Lata is sitting right in front of me or as they say I just came and sat right on the back of her. I tell you, I am losing charm in her overtime; her being married hasn’t helped much either. I think it’s finally over.

The Friends For Sale (FFS) application on Facebook is really making me crazy. When I meet someone new, I often find myself guessing how much he is worth.

“…we try to use optimality criterion to solve this problem as best as possible…”

Here comes champu and jj. Pucchu is not here yet. Today champu and I went to Prof. Ketaki. She is the instructor for our humanities course. It was about our presentation that is due.

“…model parameter is called the training sequence…”

Oops! Sir tried to peak into my writing.

I had one of the most satisfying talks with her. She sensed a bit of political sense in me from my mid-sem answer scripts. She talked about how not to lose sense of what we believe in and how we feel about it. “The whole world will try and take it away from you…but it’s so divine that it must be protected”. Her words are still ringing in my ears.

“…let N be the size of the code book. So we get the seq of vectors out of M diff. indexes”

Why is the attendance so low today? I can hardly count 15.

Where was I? Yes, champu. He is the sort of guy who keeps the group going. “Never let the fun die out”. Champu tried to peek into my diary. I gave him the finger.

“…to segment each of the word training sequence into stages and study the prob. Of the spectral vectors.”

God! I feel sleepy. It’s been 2 days now, I guess.

JJ and I finished working on a term paper recently. It dealt with DNA cryptography, such a novel idea. We have worked really hard on it. Hope it materializes.

It’s the purple suit and a brown hair clip today. Can’t I leave it already?

“…once the w-HMM’s recognition of an uttered unknown word is done using a solution to problem.. each word is modeled based upon the given test observation sequence…”

The FFS is engulfing like hell. I was just napping about it. God it’s great. I heard a remark about me sitting in this particular seat. I got the hint.

Champu sneezed, kido yawned while ld enjoyed the usual nap. FFS once again crossed my thoughts. Don’t call me crazy. If you think you don’t get addicted that easily, try it once.

Written by arpitgarg

April 1, 2008 at 11:42 am

Dreaming again

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The music is very loud. The crowd is dancing in fun and frenzy. I can’t see much amidst the cigarette smoke, save the belly of my dance partner. What a unique belly button. Not round as all are, somewhat square as one may call it. Unique but stunning. No point hiding it, belly button is what turns me on the most. Suddenly the music has stopped. I can hear some humming. The belly button has moved away becoming round, making the belly flat and black.

Where was I? Oh! Yes, now I remember. Kumar Sirs lecture. Have I been day dreaming again, about yet another belly button? Oh my God! I have been.

“…where ar = The LPC’s of the reference and at will be the LPC of test…”

“What was all this junk”? Professor Kumar is trying his best to explain the concepts to us, but believe you me; I am getting none of it. Not that I am trying to. When I look around all I can see is 50 faces of people from Mars. I try to make a poker face, trying to save my emotions from spilling. Like I have any of them!

The guy sitting on my right, two rows ahead. I don’t know his name. He was one from the masters’ course. Why I or for that matter any of my bachelors’ colleague won’t know his name is a matter that I don’t want to rake up right now, but will take it up later.

So this guy, donning the thinnest nose I have ever seen is moving back and forth; trying to stay awake. What’s that outside the window? At a certain distance, I can see a dupatta, pink in colour. The more I try to focus, the more I can’t. The curtain in the room is trying hard to obstruct my view. No matter. I can still make up for the lost opportunity by using the power of my imagination. Alas! What am I turning into?

Enough of this monkey business. Let’s come back to the class room. Dada bond is sitting in the second row, extreme left, with his bag over his shoulder. Now that we have come to Dada bond, let me tell you why we call him bond. He is one of a kind. I remember during our first year at college when I was trying to grasp the basics of C. I still shiver  to think of those days. At that time he used to hack our accounts. A lot of time his mail account was blocked by admin owing to unusual activities. That was the official reason though. Whatever, as usual he is with his bag on and jotting down each and every dot of chalk that Kumar Sir is making on the board. Why is he making all these notes in this last semester? It seems a bit unusual to me, but who cares.

Yes, I forgot to tell you, this is my last semester at college. 8th semester. 4 years have passed. I have always heard that time flows very fast. But it’s only when such moments  arrive that you realize the gravity of the statement. It seems just like yesterday, when I first came to college. Now two months hence, I would be leaving all of this for a new place.  But all these thoughts can wait, the lecture is important.

“…100 such values/sec will be streaming from source…we have to further do the analysis of the data by cepstral analysis…”

Sorry Pa! I can’t handle this at all. About Professor Kumar himself. He is one of the senior faculty members of CSE  dept. Ah yes! I am in Computer Science Dept. This Kumar Sir is also one of a kind. His lecture may fall short of technical details but none that he speaks can be grammatically wrong. It all has to be articulated to the T. Current course, comes under his research interests. Thereby we are being subjected to two hours of agony or as they say double delight.

I am feeling bit like a goose. Coz while writing all this, I have to look once a while at the projector board and nod my head several times to imitate that I am following the lecture.

Well there is this lady in the class, the only one enrolled for this course (I really liked this line “in this course”, like the situation is any better otherwise). Let’s call her Lata. She is sitting just in front of me or better still I came and sat just behind her. She is the only one from Venus in the room.

Oh! Sir might have a hint that I am not following the lecture. Let me nod vigorously.

Back to Lata. I call her lady, coz she seems to be quite elder to us, having enrolled for a PhD. Now that I have come to her, let’s finish it off.

I first saw her in Preetam Sirs class. Preetam Sir, deserves special mention and I will come to him later in detail. I saw her and like we all here are, concentrated more on her than the lecture or the projector board. After these four years at a sex starved college, I am not shy anymore staring the opposite sex, if I see one. This went on for a week till I found out that she was married. Oh! One more of my infatuation breaks.

It’s hard for me to understand how one can continue studies even after marriage. Why deny those sweet moments of cuddling and love for such boring lectures. But I guess that’s my frustration speaking. Gaining knowledge is essence of life and can be done at any point in life. She is married but to still gaze at her like that? Maybe I see her as a ray of hope at the very end of the tunnel.

Written by arpitgarg

March 19, 2008 at 11:46 am

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