Music, Unsorted

Hey, what’s up?

Dear Zonk,

I’m writing to you today because I’m in the mood to talk and my phone is in the other room and I’m too lazy to go get it and call someone. Which makes me sound like a potato, I know, but I’m not. I can prove it. I have a Google spreadsheet where I’ve marked all the days I did my 7-minute workout in the past 3 weeks, and another where I’ve marked all the days I did some music in the past 1 week. And right now, the spreadsheets look like this:

(The yellow squares is me. The blue squares is Rahul, who, thankfully, has not done too much more than me. Do not try to correct this sentence. Or the one before it. It’s probably erroneous but I don’t care to change it. And also it’s okay to start a sentence with ‘because’ or say ‘yellow squares is me’ if you know what you’re doing. Clearly I know what I’m doing. I use words like ‘erroneous’.)

I do believe I killed it. I can play Crash Into Me, now. Not too well, but still.

I bet you didn’t know you could embed Google spreadsheets in your blog. Neither did I. I only just found out. And if you did know about it, I’ll buy you a beer.

In other news, I feel pretty confused about how I feel today. I feel morose because I’m falling sick and I can’t breathe properly and my head hurts, and enthusiastic because my mom’s made amazing potatoes for dinner and annoyed because I’ve had an irritating day at work and happy because I got given a Toblerone for putting up with the irritatingness.

I think the Toblerone probably tips the scales in favour of Happy. This is why I like my office.

Also, today I listened again to a song that I wrote and recorded on Saturday with C that I wasn’t too happy with. This time, I took off the percussion parts and now I’m beginning to really like it :) If all goes well, I will share it with all of you. Here.

Goodnight and goodbye.

Love always,

Music, Unsorted

Current obsessions

As of today, the last week, and the last month – in that order:

  • Dave Matthews in general, solo acoustic performances in particular. I can play Grace is Gone a little bit better now than I could fifteen minutes ago. It’s not much, but it’s Something.
  • Doing up my home, which is a small cluttered space that has taken shape sort of  haphazardly over the last ten years. We recently did some repair work in the bathroom and kitchen, and now I’m itching to do the rest.
  • The 7 minute workout that I’m trying to do regularly with Rahul. I have done a decent job (except for the last three days which I skipped for various very legit reasons.) I have 2 muscles now.

Also, a concern: I’m afraid I might have lost the part of me that wrote songs.  I haven’t written a complete song in far too long now. Does skill come with an expiry date and can I apply for an extension? Come on, Zonk. Help me out here. Tell me what you know.

Love always,


Life Lesson-

Ignoring dental problems is not an effective way of dealing with fear of dentists.

I’ve learned this the hard way.
Appointment #2 is tomorrow. I hope this time I’m braver and don’t flail my arms and legs so much while people put drills in my mouth.

When all of this is over, I will go stuff my face full of donuts. And right after that I will begin to treat my teeth like the jewels that they are. Or ought to be. After the fucking root canals. I will brush fifteen times an hour. I will go to the dentist all the fucking time so he can arrest the evil before it takes root again. I will go so many times that he will have my number on speed dial and invite me to his children’s birthday parties. Which I will attend. And while I’m there I will eat no cake. So he can see what a stellar dental client I can be, even if I did try to kick him during my root canal.

Please, Universe, please let them discover a Miraculous Cure for all dental maladies while I am asleep tonight. Let them not numb my face and drill holes into my skull. And also I want to be able to drink tomorrow night. Which won’t be possible if I’m pumped full of anesthesia. So, Miraculous Cure, please. Thank you. And hurry.

Literature, Unsorted


n. the frustration of being stuck in just one body, that inhabits only one place at a time, which is like standing in front of the departures screen at an airport, flickering over with strange place names like other people’s passwords, each representing one more thing you’ll never get to see before you die—and all because, as the arrow on the map helpfully points out, you are here.
(from The Dictionary Of Obscure Sorrows)

What if you had become a painter of signs instead? Or a chemist. Or a lighthouse operator or a teacher or a monk. What if you’d married your first love? What if every single choice you’ve ever made that has led you to where you are right now was actually second best? And floating around somewhere out there is another version of you; a version that always chose wisely and well and is unknowable and therefore, infintely better.

There’s got to be a better way of going about this business of living.

Love always, and a touch of consternation,



You should read this book.

It’s called Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality (HPMOR), and you can read it online or download it here. You’re probably thinking you’re too old for Harry Potter, but you’re wrong. Because firstly, nobody is ever too old for Harry Potter. And secondly, reading HPMOR is not entirely the same as reading HP.

I put that link in the first sentence so you would click on it and go check out the book immediately. Seeing as you haven’t done that yet, I’ll throw in a list about Why You Should Read This Book.

Why You Should Read This Book

  1. HPMOR is set in an alternate universe where Petunia married a professor of Biochemistry instead of Vernon Dursley, and Harry is their only and muchly beloved child. He is also a prodigy and knows a Lot about Math, Science and Sci-Fi. The point is, Harry is a geek. And geeks rule. And this book also rules, on several levels.
  2. Harry is also a rationalist. And when he discovers that magic exists and defies most of the laws of physics, he takes a rational approach to learning magic. His big ambition is to combine Science and magic to rule the world. In a very non-Voldemort way. (Note: I just used the word ‘magic’ thrice in the last two sentences. I am aware of it. It makes me feel uncomfortable, but oh well.)
  3. Remember how in the original series, most people are afraid to say Voldemort’s name? In this version, some people call him ‘Voldy’.
  4. HPMOR doesn’t ignore the Muggle angle. It explores it and exploits it.
  5. Characters in HPMOR are better developed, and grayer (characters in HP, on the other hand, are mostly black or white, except for Snape and Dumbledore, toward the end of the series.) Snape is smarter and more bitter and his wounds are more visible. Moody is more hardcore. Dumbledore is more crazy. Draco isn’t just the spoiled son of an evil man. And Harry isn’t a clueless, reluctant tragic hero. Things don’t happen to him. He makes them happen. You cannot identify with him, and it’s not as easy to like him. But he’s definitely very, very interesting.
  6. In HPMOR, 11 year old witches and wizards actually behave like children. They are silly and petty and immature without being stupid. Which is pretty awesome.
  7. Time Turners play a huge role. Which is only fair because, you know, they are fucking Time Turners.
  8. Apparently, all the science in this book is real. I don’t know or understand much science. I studied Literature in college. But I sure as hell am fascinated by it. Also, if you’re reading this post, you’re most likely some form of geek. Because I’ve gone over my List Of Regular Readers and it seems to me that at least 90% of Zonks are geeks. Which is pretty cool. And which means that there’s a good chance you’ll like this book if you try it.

Just so you know: I’m not saying I like this more than the original series. I love the original series. But I love this too. It’s not really comparable. HPMOR is a lot less serious, and a lot more fun, and it’ll tickle you more. Except for one horrible incident, but I will say no more.

Also, this is a fanfic, and it’s WIP. So when you finish what there is of it (which is a sizable amount) you might want to go over to the HPMOR subreddit to fill the void while you wait for the next chapter. It’s a fun place. But it’s full of spoilers.

I have typed a lot to convince you. So please go give it a shot now. Specially if you’ve read HP and like it. I swear it’ll be worth it.

Love always,

PS: If you start reading, please ping me and let me know. So I can wait for you to finish it and participate when you freak out over the Incident and discuss Quirrell theories with you.



Black and White

Someone I know sent me an old picture of his parents today, and I noticed, when I saw it, that I couldn’t recognize that the woman in it was his mother. Not until I was told who it was. And it made me realize that someday, someone might see a picture of me from right now and not recognize it at all. 

Time changes things, Zonk. And youth is fleeting. And it makes me sad to think that who I am right now will someday be just a memory confined to a black and white photograph.

Except that our photographs aren’t black and white anymore, unless we choose to instagram them that way.
I’m worried they won’t feel authentic in retrospect.