The Last Human Remnants

A solitary writer in a darkened room, staring hard at the empty sheet of paper in front of him, wishing his thoughts would fill the sheet already. Over him, death looms large, eagerly counting down the seconds, waiting to strike him dead.

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Typing Woes: Y U Do Dis?

This little rant might come off as entitled and insensitive, but I believe I’m talking for everyone when I address this issue. It’s something that affects a silent majority of us in the world. We remain silent and let it go on, not because we’re weak, but because we’re nice to others. And we have patience people can only dream of. You’ll find us everywhere, by the pool, in shopping malls, beside you on the subway, and most of us will be craning our necks down towards our phones.

The issue I’m talking about is, obviously, SMS-speak in text messages. Or to make myself clear, typng lyk dis. Why people do this has always been beyond me. Is the recipient not worth spending a bit more time on? What have you to gain from typing in shorthand? What do you exactly plan to do with the extra time you save from not typing out full words and sentences? Now granted, some might defend this behaviour and point out that most people type this way to be able to reply faster to the people they care about; they want to get their thoughts across that much faster. But to that, I retort, bullshit.

She’s probably typing ‘K’.

I will however concede that more than a decade ago, before there ever were smartphones and annoying Instagram Stories and fascist right-wing regimes in democratic countries, text messages were a precious resource. They had a 160-character limit and you had to pay by the number of texts you sent. Add to that the fact that most phones of that era had a numeric keypad. That is sufficient justification for SMS-speak. You had a character limit, which if crossed, cost you money and it was pretty difficult to type in the first place.
But guess what, times have changed. Text messages are cheap and plentiful and besides, who even uses texts when you have instant messengers galore? We now have mobile phones the size of our palms (sometimes two) and with more computing power than even the fastest supercomputers of the 80s. These phones have touch-sensitive glass screens with on-screen QWERTY keyboards that appear and disappear as we need them to. Now that I’ve stated the obvious, let’s look at what’s on offer.

Double ‘K’ attack!

You have a QWERTY keyboard at your disposal, multiple messaging platforms to communicate, with no limits on the number of characters or the type of media you can send. Except Twitter, maybe. Twitter is the like the weird kid in class. Stoic and laconic. And overrun with hate speech. So what’s your excuse for typing like it’s 2002? For me, the answer is clear. Laziness. In 2017, the only excuse you have for typing in SMS-speak, is pure, unadulterated laziness. I mean, think about your friend who texts you ‘K’. Is she/he an asshole? No, they’re pretty great in real life. And yet you find yourself rolling your eyes everytime someone texts you ‘K’. It’s just THREE more characters, why do you do this to us?

“Wat is it?” literally has just ONE character less than “What is it?”

And yet, we strive, silently, without complaining, for a better future where people aren’t lazy assholes when it comes to typing, or a future where Elon Musk’s NeuraLink turns all of us into telepathic weirdos wizards, and there is no need for any of us to type and communicate. But until such a day comes, please be mindful of others and don’t reply with ‘K’. And type out full English words, like you were taught in school. I’ll be honest, I’m half expecting a comment with just ‘K’ in it.

And people wonder why it’s still unread.

If I haven’t put you to sleep yet with my incessant and dare I say, perfectly worded ramblings, please consider liking my Facebook page. You won’t find any wholesome memes, but you will find occasional updates and links to my posts. And bad jokes. Also, follow my blog on Bloglovin’.

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In Which I Search For Ideas

What’s that I hear you asking? No motivation to write?

Not exactly. It’s just that when I do write, I have both the motivation and the inspiration to write. Right now, I’m incredibly motivated to write. Given a topic, I could probably tackle 500 words without a break. But as (bad) luck would have it, I’m all out of topics right now. I guess I could use the daily prompts, but the thing is, single word prompts aren’t exactly my style. I could never have imagined that my own words would come back to bite me in the ass.

Continue reading “In Which I Search For Ideas”

I Spent Time With Fanboys!

There’s something about fanboys that really intrigues and irritates people. Maybe it’s the fact that you don’t really ‘get’ them. It’s similar to how grownups (and yours truly) cannot understand Snapchat. Being part of a fanboy clique is exciting and it feels great to have a community to talk about it with, looking at you /r/starwars and /r/kingfallsam. But it’s only when you distance yourself a bit, zoom out and look at things from the outside, that you realize how annoying fanboys can be.

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All In The Little Things

This one begins when I paid a visit to the hair salon. No, I wasn’t just visiting them without any purpose, I actually got my hair cut. Most people love showers because of the freedom it affords them. They can sing, dance, think or just battle crippling anxiety and depression while standing under that constant stream of water, a metaphor for the slow and constant passing of time, leading us all to our eventual deaths and the Universe’s stark indifference to our existence and death. Anyway, people love showers mostly because of the isolation it provides them to sing, or think deeply about things they wouldn’t really think about at other times. It’s easy to see why there’s a whole community built around this.

Unlike most people, I prefer to do all this while I’m at the salon. Not the singing and dancing, mind you. The thinking. There’s no situation more conducive for thinking, as sitting in an air-conditioned room with music blasting in the background and a sharp instrument really close to your ears, clipping away at the hair you’ve spent months nurturing and growing. You can’t help but wonder if the barber is a latent sex offender, as he offers you a free face masssage after the haircut. But, experience has taught me over time that this isn’t the case. I digress. Also, haircuts are one of the few situations where I can get the job done, without much talking. That earns it bonus points in my book.

As my thoughts wandered in the salon, I couldn’t help but notice this snippet of wisdom. John Travolta was right in Pulp Fiction. It’s the little things that make two places different. Not the entire tradition and customs or ethnic make up, just the little things. (Note this down, kids, that’s how you generalise things.) It’s the same with barbers. It’s the attention to details that sets apart a good salon from a great one.

Welp, I’m hungry now.

One particular salon I frequented, before I returned to my hometown after finishing college, prided itself on its attention to detail. The barber’s cape they would drape over me had the name of the salon embroidered over it. That’s pretty normal, I know, but the design in itself was such that when I looked into the mirror in front of me, there it was, the name of the salon, exactly how it should be, which is to say it wasn’t mirrored. I gazed down and saw that the embroidery was inverted, so that when patrons looked into the mirror, the name appeared un-inverted. And then, the barber got pissed off because I moved my head as he was working on it.

Unfortunately, at the salon I went to earlier this week, that wasn’t the case. It was a plain cape, with no thought put into how the embroidery might look like to a customer in the mirror. There it was, a plain guy, wearing a plain cape, staring at me from the mirror, and the words were all flipped. I guess this doesn’t matter all that much in the end. Maybe nobody else puts so much thought into these things as I do. Maybe they do, but they don’t launch into wordy, winding rants about it online. Nevertheless, this train of useless thoughts had to come to an end when the barber was done with his job. Fast forward a couple of minutes, to skip over an awkward social interaction I had with the barber regarding the pay, and I’m in my shower, thinking about how I never have thoughts in the shower, but during haircuts. So meta.

If you’ve somehow managed to reach this point and not fall asleep, consider liking my Facebook page. You won’t find any wholesome memes, but you will find occasional updates and links to all my posts. And bad jokes.

Hustling With Ear Hustle

I’ve talked about podcasts before, and their future as well. So it should probably come as no surprise that I’m currently listening to Ear Hustle, a new podcast from Radiotopia. Ear Hustle explores the life of inmates at the San Quentin prison and what it’s like living there. And it’s not just a documentary taking you through the whole life-in-a-prison-system. The co-host is actually an imate at the prison.

The show is recorded inside the prison and delves into the lives of the people within, real humans like you and me. Most of them are serving sentences of at least two decades, and Ear Hustle provides in-depth details of their time within. There’s only one episode right now, with more to come in the following weeks, but the first episode is just chock full of details without any sugar coating.

The first episode deals with cellmates, or cellies, and how getting the wrong one could land you in trouble. Big trouble. Now, you might think having a brother for a cellie might be a great deal. But it turns out there were brothers in the same prison, who thought it might be a good idea to be in the same 9×4 cell. Turns out, they didn’t really know each other very well and took some time to adjust to each other and be compatible. Now just imagine what it would be to share a cell with a stranger.

While Ear Hustle goes into the lives of prison inmates, one thing I (and lots of others) loved about the podcast is how one of the hosts is an actual inmate at the prison. Most people are tired of the clichéd “NPR-ish white narrator” style that most podcasts have. Not only is Ear Hustle giving a voice to incarcerated people, but also to those of colour.

I guess that’s about it with my thoughts on Ear Hustle. Check the podcast out at their website, or wherever you get your podcasts.

If you’ve somehow managed to reach this point and not fall asleep, consider liking my Facebook page. You won’t find any memes or funny videos, but you will find occasional updates and links to all my posts. And bad jokes.

I Can’t Let Go

I Can’t Let Go

Ppppsssshhhh. Starting a post is always hard. Diamonds and steel carbide blades aren’t as hard as staring at an empty page with a judgemental cursor, blinking at you in a condescending manner. But enough of the jokes, at least the bad ones.

What happens when a government chosen by the people, for the people, loses sight of its aims and prioritises the lives of cattle? Well, that just happened in my country. Cattle slaughter of kind and even sales of cattle is now banned and/or heavily controlled. Going full retard on political topics isn’t really my style, so we’ll go into something else.

Since I’m pretty much useless at everything, I decided to rebel in my own way. By ordering beef, that pinnacle of human-made cuisine, and taking pics of it and posting it, which is a first for me. Because I’m usually too lazy or self-conscious to do so.

I don’t usually do this, but the situation really called for it, I guess. Anyway, here’s what I had, all regional dishes.

When beef is banned in your country but you still have feelings for beef.

The way I see this government’s relation with the people, I imagine it might be like me with a girl. You know those girls that are labelled “high maintenance”? Yeah, I’m like the male version of that. I’m prone to frequent and random mood swings, baseless tantrums and outright denial. Every. Damn. Time. Any time this government is done screwing up, the divert the attention to something else; laws related to cattle in this case. Anyway, enough with the boring stuff. Here’s another pic of food. 😋

Beef is love. Beef is life. (Beef and chilly curry, beef fry with diced onions and lemon as garnish, and a sort-of cake made with powdered rice and grated coconut that is then steamed after being covered with a banana leaf.)

But despite everything that might (or might not) happen if I ever get into a relationship with the opposite sex, I’ll still admit that I have feelings for beef. This ‘forbidden love’ angle just makes it more exciting. I truly can’t let go.

If you’ve been paying attention, you’ll notice I tend to align my images at the centre. It’s a vestige of my constant report creation that being an engineering student entails. My whole life, and those of other students in India, revolves in an endless loop around Times New Roman, 12 and Times New Roman, 16, Bold for headings and Times New Roman, 10 for headers and footers.

If you’ve been paying attention, you’ll also notice that I never stay on a topic. I keep rambling and jumping from topic to topic. Staying just long enough so that it seems I have written enough about it, but not staying long enough to reveal that I know next to nothing about it. I learned that from the best in the trade: my lecturers at college.

This is me jumping from topic to topic while avoiding my responsibilities.

If you’ve somehow managed to reach this point and not fall asleep, consider liking my Facebook page. You won’t find any memes or funny videos, but you will find occasional updates and links to all my posts. And bad jokes.

Image of jumping bunny on Pinterest.