Changes – Part I (Where I got sick of the story line)

Dear Zonk,

I’ve been making vague posts about Changes for a while now, and I think the time has come to tell you everything. It’s kind of a long story, but you’ve trudged through so many of those here by now that I think you’ll maybe stick around for this one too. Because, you see, this is a big deal for me.

So, here goes.

I’ve never made any real decisions in life. I’ve just sort of drifted into this point in time and space by accident.
I spent most of my teens believing I’d grow up and be some sort of writer. And then one day I happened to paint a pair of shoes. My friend Frank liked those shoes, and he happened to make me a Facebook page and people happened to place orders. So I painted more shoes. And then, when I got sick of the smell of canvas and rubber, I started painting other things. The whole painting thing took on a life of its own and it took me to some really random places. Which I liked, mind you. I didn’t know I could paint till I was 20, and I didn’t know just how much I’d come to love it until much later, when I started painting small canvases. It never made me much money, of course, and I knew that at some point I’d have to get a real job doing real things.

At which point, C suggested I learn Photoshop. He pointed out that if I can do art I can probably do design and I thought – wow, this is so much cooler than MS Paint. So he taught me some basic Photoshop, and I learned more and started doing some freelance design work and then that took on a life of its own. I got a shit agency job that set my career back by thousands, hated it, stuck it out and quit it 6 months later to join Webly. That was almost three years ago, and Webly’s been on a roller coaster ride of its own since then. And I rode along and evolved in a very peculiar and unplanned direction: from Graphic Design to Web Design to eCommerce to UI/UX.

If you’d met me three years ago, you’d never have predicted I’d specialize in UI/UX Design someday. I wouldn’t have predicted I’d specialize in UI/UX design someday. Or that I’d actually be good at it. But I did, and I am, and honestly, I enjoy it.

Only I’m not a UI Designer at heart. At least, I’m not only a UI Designer. Or even a designer at all. And I’ve been unhappy for a while now because at some point, I turned 25. And when you’re a quarter of a century old you begin to feel less invincible. Things begin to feel more transient and you realize that time and youth are running out and if you don’t like where you’re heading you need to start rerouting now. Old age will happen to you someday. And then, when you’re 40, and you look back at things and ask what you’ve done with Life and all the lemons it threw at you…well. I don’t want to say that I took those lemons and built some good UI.

Don’t get me wrong. UI Design is great. It’s challenging and fun and it takes time to get good at it. But you see, Zonk, I used to do a lot of things. I used to paint and make music and blog like a maniac. (A cookie to you if you get the reference.) I still do all of those things, but only barely. I last painted in October. I have only 2 posts on Bleak Person Chronicles. I’ve been playing more music lately but these spikes happen in fits and bursts and I’ve found that I can’t sustain it.

And so, I panicked. And I told myself that by December, I will Make Some Changes and then proceeded to do absolutely nothing. And then December rolled around and I panicked again and told myself that by March, I will Make Some Changes. And to make sure I did that, I let the people at work know that Changes were on the charts and I’d be doing something differently by the time March ended and I might even leave. Nobody knew what the fuck to make of that, of course, because I really didn’t have a clear idea of anything to begin with. I only had a whole lot of discontent and a sense of tragic waste and a vague need to do something about it.

And now, because this post is getting way too long, I’ll break it off here and go into the actual changing bit in part II.

Art, Design, Literature, Music, Unsorted


Edit: All of these resolutions I have underway are only surviving because of my first resolution, which I forgot to mention. I am reading less this year.

Dear Zonk,

2015 is over two weeks old now, and I think it’s time I told you more about the many things I’ve decided to do this year and how I’ve fared so far. First, you should know that I’ve never before made so many serious resolutions. I suppose it had something to do with being young and dismissive and disrespectful of Time. Time sucks, you know. It fucking flies. You get years and years of being obscenely and undeniably Young. And then suddenly, before you know it, you’re making little tick marks in the “26 to 30” box in surveys and questionnaires. It’s alarming when that happens. Because, you know, you were in college so recently and you’re so used to being young and that whole aging thing wasn’t supposed to actually happen to you…

But it does. And it would have been nice to have gotten a head start on this whole Making The Most Of Life thing. But I pretty much threw away my early twenties being lax and lazy. So, here I am now. 26 and reeking of regret.

I’ve been brooding over this for over a year now: I’m not happy with where I’ve ended up a quarter of a century into this whole business of Being. And I figured I should stop whining and do something about it while I’m still a long way off from becoming a fossil. So, here goes. These are my resolutions.

  1. Become a healthier person. I’m an old lady. I have old lady bones that creak and click and muscles that strain too easily and a faulty neck and so on. I suspect this has something to do with the fact that my diet for the last 26 years has consisted mostly of starch and sugar and salt. Thin people take food for granted. I’m like that. I also don’t exercise enough, in spite of making serious attempts at sticking to a regular 7 minute workout schedule. So I plan to change that this year. I also really, really, really want a low resting pulse rate. But well. That’s a long way off.So far: Meh. I did a 2 week chip cleanse. That went badly, seeing as I’ve been stuffing my face full of chips ever since. I’ve not managed to do much working out. I’m trying to fix it. I really want to hit the 4 days a week mark soon. Well. I’ll keep trying.
  2. Figure out what I want to do. Because this is not it. There’s got to be something more. And there’s got to be time to hone all the skills I used to possess. I had potential in more than one area, you know. Maybe somewhere, some of it exists still. I need to figure out how to get to it.So far:  I’ve actually done okay here. I’ve been talking to lots of different people and thinking of possibilities. It’s all still kind of vague now. But I have all my fingers crossed. And if something works out, I’ll go get a haircut. Just saying.
  3. Make more music. So, I have no delusions about this. I am a decent songwriter. Sadly, I am also a mediocre guitarist and not much of a singer. I have a thin voice and a surplus of stomach butterflies and it makes me nervous to think of playing or singing around people. But, here’s the thing. I just did a rough count in my head right now and I have at least 9 songs of my own that I’m moderately proud of. 9 decent songs. That’s not bad, Zonk, if you think about it. And there’s more that I’ve left unfinished and so on.So my resolution this year is to make more music. Write more songs. Practice all three of my instruments. And, most importantly, record bearable versions of at least half of my 9 songs. You know, so I have something to show for it. I don’t want much more than that. I just want to be able to point to something and say – “Look. I made this.”

    So far: I’m actually quite proud. I jammed with new people on one song. I sort of finished recording another with C (I just need to add some violin parts to it, though we all know that could take months to accomplish). I practiced both guitar and ukulele a lot in the last week. I actually dusted off and tuned my violin this week. And I’m pretty excited about finishing the song. I’m seriously considering putting a WIP version up here. Who knows. Maybe I will.

  4. Bleak Person Chronicles. Sigh. This is the still-secret other blog I was supposed to have started last year. It exists. But it’s still not ready to be put out there. I have a lot of work to do with setting up and designing the theme and with you know, writing actual fucking posts. Like more than 2 a year, perhaps. Anyway. I’m sharing the link with you. And the password. Because, Zonk, you of all people deserve to know about any blog I’m trying to do. And also because maybe if I’m accountable to someone, I’ll do more about actually getting this off the ground. Here goes. Don’t share:
    Username: A Person
    Password: thisisasecret10

That’s all, and that’s already too much. I think if I manage to do well on at least half of this, I will be a happier person this year.

Goodbye, Zonk. And a Happy Saturday to you.

Love always,

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,


The Week Of Big Tees

Dear Zonk,

Last week was tiring. There was:

  • 1 mid-week late night party
  • 1.5 days of semi-sickness
  • at least 3 (and maybe 4) days of working late
  • 1 working Saturday (though working Saturdays at Webly have become a lot of fun)
  • and only one Sunday

Normally, I don’t really like Sundays. There’s too much end-of-weekend pressure to be productive. But on weeks when Saturdays don’t feel like they should feel, you take what you get. And all you get is Sunday. And this Sunday has been a sad waste, on account of extended-family things.

So, I’m feeling a little bit rebellious. And on days when I feel rebellious I wear big t-shirts to work. I also wear big t-shirts to work when I feel happy or contented or comfy. And definitely when I’m sick. Some might say I wear big t-shirts a lot. I don’t know.

In any case, as a symbol of protest, and also as a symbol of celebration for the sudden bursts of creative productivity I’ve had over the past few weeks, I will wear big t-shirts the whole of next week.

Every. Single. Day.

I have a feeling I might run out of wearable big t-shirts this week. But I also have a feeling that the three I ordered just now might make it to me in time to save the day. Oops. Week.

You could have lived your whole life without knowing this, but I’ve been too silent here for too long. I figure a bit of random banter might be okay right now.

Love always,


Cheap shiny funny (or I, Maker of Plans)

On my way home today I went to the music store and bought 3 of those little peg like things that hold your guitar strings in place below the bridge. Then I came home, and went to help a friend out with something. I got back just some time ago, and now I’m sitting here with no socks and cold feet and typing up this post of things I did not do while the things that remind me of what I ought to be doing lie strewn quietly all around me. Like the three little pegs in my bag.

Here’s a list of things I’ve gotten after my office moved, on account of I believed the extra time would turn me into a dramatically productive person.

  • One sketch pad
  • One watercolour pad
  • One small set of acrylic paints (my old paints are so congealed that I had to go get new ones)
  • Some new inks
  • A palette (such needless luxury)
  • Several drawing pens (I keep losing these)
  • Several brushes (I keep losing these)
  • Two boxes to keep all of the above in
  • One new guitar case (this I don’t regret – my old one was in pieces)
  • Three string-peg-things (I really ought to google this and find out what they’re actually called)
  • A new set of strings
  • Rosin (I lost mine)
  • A low quality violin mute
  • One domain name (hosting’s for free)

In retrospect, it’s only two extra hours a day. How much did I think I would accomplish with two extra hours a day? Besides, I come back everyday to a house full of small children. And small children, as a rule, are not very conducive to productivity.

Plus, of course and very obviously, I am a lazy girl.

It’s kind of funny that I keep making new plans to do things while all the evidence I’ve collected thus far suggests that I should just stop trying already. A sad sort of funny. A pale yellow potentially bright sort of funny. A weak-willed and cheaply shiny sort of funny. You know what I mean. Do you know what I mean? Because I feel like I’m not getting this point across right.

Oh well.

If I wrote a tragicomedy about my tryst with the violin (or with anything else at all, really), would you read it? And would you appreciate the inevitable anticlimax at the end?

I’m going to wake up tomorrow and regret writing this while half asleep. Apologies for my incoherence. I am a rambler on the inside. What you see here’s usually highly edited snippets of vast and endless ramblings.


Literature, Unsorted

And so it is.

Dear Zonk,

I’ve been on a Harry Potter revisiting spree for a bit now. I started with book one because I had nothing else to read at the point, and then I kept reading, and now I’m on book five.
My Kobo has become really important to me. I would never  have borrowed HP from my library, because, you know, it’s HP, and I’ve read it before, and I can’t waste my two library books on taking something I’ve read so many times before. But I have it all on my Kobo, and I can read all the fucking time. In the bus, in a rick at night, standing up in a crowded train, in bed with the lights out..

Right now, I am at work. But I don’t want to be at work, Zonk. I want to be at Hogwarts!
Failing which, I at least want to be at home, lying in bed with my sockshoes on and reading Harry Potter.

Love always,
Yours sulkily,

PS: I lost my sockshoes at a bachelorette party. And so it is.

Unsorted, Updater


Dear Zonk,

Sunday is almost over and I don’t have the time to talk. I have other things to do. Like catch up on my Parks and Recreation or read my brand new book. But, things have been happening, and this is a quick little list of updates.

  1. My office has moved to Ghatkopar, and it’s beautiful, and life is a whole lot better for me now. Maximum travel time is now 1 hour, as opposed to the 2.5 hour maximum I used to do to Bandra. So, thank you Universe.
  2. Office timings are now 8.30 – 5.30 as opposed to 10 – 7. Coupled with the new and reduced travel time, this makes Everything more awesome. I actually left work and 5.40 last Thursday, and reached home at 6.40. 6 fucking 40 in the evening, Zonk. You don’t know how amazing that feels. *smug face*
  3. I’m less of a crazy person now than I was 2 months ago. Things can still improve. And they will. But at least I don’t feel sick all the time anymore.
  4. I’ve been watching Parks and Recreation a lot lately, and it’s my new Favourite Thing To Watch In The World.
  5. This arrived today, and it made my day. I love Allie Brosh. And I hope she’s doing okay.
    Hyperbole and a half!And now, I go. Parks and Recreation awaits me. And also, Allie Brosh.