I got engaged yesterday. Officially. An actual ceremonial affair with 20-ish people in a lounge with a chunnar and tilaks and rings and everything. The rings were fucked up and have now been sent for repair. The lounge was nice. The people were lovely, and everyone had a nice time. And C and I blundered through the whole thing like the awkward, ungraceful, over-sized children that we are. We figured that we really aren’t built for this stuff. So we went to Hamley’s when it was done and bought ourselves things – I got a skinny monkey named Murphy who looks kind and sad and flops around, and C got a cheap looking tank to assemble and practice his painting on.
And then I came back home, and I thought of you.
Here’s something I realised right away – I’ve been writing here for almost a decade now.
I was 19 when I started this blog – a skinny, whiny, morose little person who wanted to be a copywriter and played guitar for several hours at a time and drank copious amounts of DSP Black and Old Monk.
I’m 28 now. I’m not a copywriter. Not in the terrible advertising kind of way, that is. I no longer make drawings on Microsoft Paint. I’ve forgotten how to play several songs that I’d spent ages learning. I’ve gone from not-really-painting to painting for a living to painting once a year or so. I’ve been broke, then less-broke, then sort of rich – and I’ve still not managed to figure out where all of my money goes. I’ve taken up and abandoned several things – the violin, the Irish tin whistle, a bullet journal, a blog (which is not abandoned, no it’s not!) I’ve learned to stop panicking. I’ve become a decent designer – accidentally, perhaps. I’ve made a best friend on this blog. I’ve gained 10 kilos, at least.
I’ve won some, I’ve lost some. Not a bad 9 years, all in all.
But the point is, that for 9 years now, I’ve pretty much been talking nonstop. And some of you have been listening nonstop. That’s really something, Zonk. It really, really is.
If I invite you to my wedding, do you think you’d come? I really hope you do. Because you’re as much a part of my life as anyone can ever be. I’m glad I have you around.
For the duration of this post, you are not Zonk. Zonk is Rahul, BFF in the Male Category, who found this blog on Vox a long time ago and christened himself Zonk and left a message on this post. That was 6 years ago, and we’re best friends now, on account of Rahul is one of the most spontaneous, interesting people I know. And also probably the most Alive. Which only goes to show that the Internet is a wonderful place where strangers turn into real people, and people become friends sometimes.
I started writing this post because Rahul made a List Of Things To Do On His Birthday and I think it’s an excellent list that you should maybe read. (Ps. I helped make it.) But then I figured that it would be nice to do a series of posts dedicated to the people closest to me over the next one year. The Birthday Series. This post is the first of them.
Rahul’s List of Things To Do Today
Spray paint graffiti
Smoke from a Vaporiser
Have special coffee
Put up a blog post
Launch a Chinese Lantern
Talk to a new girl
Make a song. Even if it’s only 4 lines.
Run a kilometre.
Make one person very happy somehow.
Give yourself a gift, and also your mom. (Like Charlie, from Perks)
Find a new blog worth reading regularly.
Give everyone present at your party a compliment. Separate compliment for each person.
If there’s an open mic night somewhere, play. If not, perform at the party anyway.
Feel the rain.
Watch the sunset.
Take a selfie with everyone there.
Touch the sea.
Give 3 strangers a hug.
Write emails to those you’d want to meet but can’t.
Get a new Look for a day and also do something cool with facial hair (if it currently exists.)
Wear headgear you’ve never worn before for the evening.
Hitch hike at least 1km.
Either get a drink or 50rs.
Find an old album you love and listen to it straight through.
Make a new friend.
Go to Thane!
Happy Birthday, Zonk :) I hope you kill this list today. (But honestly, how?!)
Ps. I might make a list of things to do for my birthday this year, too. I think it’s a nice idea. A whole other sort of wishlist.
Yesterday was Epic. Because there was Karaoke at work, and a photo booth at the New Year’s Eve costume party, and because, for once, every one had a costume. Also, I drank just the right amount and danced all through the party. It’s only the third time in my life that I’ve managed that, and it felt good.
I was Wednesday Friday Addams, and not to be immodest or anything, but I think my costume killed it.
It was a good start to the year. I hope the rest of the year is awesome too. For me and for you, both.
I hope you have a mind-blowing year, Zonk. I hope you do things you’ve been too lazy or lonely or afraid to do. I hope you get to work less and sleep and read and watch TV and make music more. (And I hope that that doesn’t come with any fiscal deficits.) I hope you are more happy than sad; and every time that you are sad, I hope you have someone to wallow with. Because I’ve had to wallow a lot this last year, and I know how important wallowing company can be*. And I hope you’re never bored. Because Time is finite and you are awesome and I’m not just saying that-
-I can feel it in my bones.
*That’s you: C, Rahul J, Troop, Niyati, Garreth. If ever you feel more neurotic than normal, I’ve got your back.
Edit: My apologies for this mother-of-all-long-posts. But it is imperative that you read it to the end. It is Very Important Indeed, and also Absolutely Fucking Urgent. Thank you, and please proceed.
I just spent a long time talking to Frank after a long time (see what I did there?) And talking to Frank always makes me think about how much more I used to blog six years or so ago, when I’d just started out on Vox and he’d signed up to be my first ever subscriber. I was a whole lot younger then, Zonk, and enthusiastic and energetic and excited about things. I whizzed through my world like a baby cockroach on caffeine. I fizzed and popped and bubbled. I was like Red Bull. I had wiiings. I could take trains every day twice a day and not think twice about it. I could play guitar for hours on end and make songs that I can no longer remember (or manage to play.) I could blog a hell of a lot – twice a day, thrice a day, as many times a day as you please – and never run out of things to say.
But I’m older now, and tireder, and I seem to have run out of things to say and spare time to say them in. And steam, even, but that is a temporary thing.
I grow old, I grow old. I shall wear the bottom of my trousers rolled.
And so, I’ve decided to start up on a new project. The Bring-My-Blog-Back-To-Life project. And I know I’ve been glum and grumpy and neglectful a lot lately, but I’m hoping that some of you who’ve stuck around will help me figure this out. So here goes.
How To Participate
Ask yourself if you’ve been reading this blog for a while. By ‘a while’ I mean for over a year or so. If yes, then know that you are a stellar person with incredible taste and beautiful things will come your way.
If not, then ask yourself if you’re willing to sift through some of the debris here and go back in time and read a couple of random articles from my alternately bleak and colourful blog. If yes, then know that you’re pretty awesome and that I love you. Proceed to Step 2
Think about the blog from Back Then and its ghost from Here Now and see if there’s anything you’d like to see more of. It could be a kind of post, a tone of voice, topics, tags, Random Advice; anything at all.
Be a sweetheart and tell me about it. Entries open for one week from tomorrow. Leave it in a comment on this post, and I will collate the data and make all the calculations and prep myself up with brand-new-bloggness to hit you with in December. (More about December in that other post I told you about.)
Rules of Posting
Be nice, or stay quiet. I really care about this.
It’s too late in the night for me to attempt to make up more rules.
What You Get Out Of This
For the Zonk that leaves the most nicely written comment (in my humble opinion) – I will sift through your blog and find and share the link to my favourite of your posts. Which isn’t much, I know. It’s not like you’ll be getting any crazy traffic on my account. But you will maybe get that warm fuzzy feeling we all get when someone likes what we write and responds nicely to it.
For the top three most insightful and helpful Zonks – I will write one post dedicated to you highlighting your superpowers. For real. (I’m not sure any of you want that. But it’d be a fun exercise for me to figure out superpowers for you. It might also be a fun exercise for you to read about said superpowers. In any case, you won’t know till you try it, and there is no harm in trying at all.)
For the Most insightful and helpful Zonk – apart from that promised superpower post – two drinks, on me. I might not be drinking myself, mind you. But I will buy you two drinks. Somehow, somewhere, someday. Sonn ideally, but that really depends on the geography and the logistics of it all.
That’s all for now, Zonk. I’m excited about this. I hope you are, too. Some of you at least. We all need to blog more in general, in life. It would make the Universe a more bearable place.
I logged in to the blog after several weeks today, and found this –
Three whole years, Zonk. Of whining and tale-telling and sulking; and you. Time flies. And I’m afraid I have too little to show for it. And that it grows littler everyday. Because, if you really think about it, I don’t have much more now than I did three years ago. A few more skills, maybe. And a vastly quieter blog.
Ps. If you’ve been here for more than a little while, thank you for sticking around. I love you. And I’m sorry I’ve been so quiet.
I’m here to tell you that I miss you you, and that I have not forgotten you, and that I am sorry. It’s been far too long. A lot has happened in my world and I haven’t been reporting it at all. There is no excuse. There is only my usual explanation involving Time and its lack thereof and Life and how it is designed to suck the joy out of living. Or blogging, at least.
I work very hard these days, you know. And the strange thing is, I enjoy it. For now, at least. It scares me to think about it but I suppose it is a good thing to love your job sometimes. And I do, these days, except on Mondays and Tuesdays and some Wednesdays. It makes me too tired to blog but well. That is no excuse.
And so, here I am, saying hello. I have maybe five minutes left before I start work.
PS: There’s a guitar now in my office. And I play some almost every morning. It’s not really playing, if you know what I mean. But my brain is awake in the morning and I’ve managed to compose most of a song over the past week. It’s not much, but it’s something.
At least I know that next time you go to your optician he won’t spoon your eyes out and and put them in a jar labelled ‘Rendered Useless Due To Excessive Reading Of Badly Designed Blog’. Remember me when that does not happen, Zonk. Every time you remember me in the context of your still-unimpaired vision, I gain a kilo. So be nice. Read my blog. Go to your optician, check that your eyes are A-Okay, and think ‘Kitu’. The more often you do it, the sooner I’ll fulfill my personal goal of reaching the 50kg-mark.
So my sister just set up her brand new blog on wordpress a few days ago. I helped her find a theme and everything, and of course that reminded me of how shit my own theme was. It was awesome when I’d picked it, but the more I learned about wordpress, Zonk, the more I hated the limitations on my blog. My theme had barely any widgets, and yes it had a colour scheme I liked and everything, but I’d be lying if I said it didn’t sort of suck, what with it’s tiny font and stuck-together lists and everything..
The theme I actually want is beautiful, but it’s not available on wordpress.com. So someday I’ll get my own domain and set it up there. Until then, I got the next best theme. It lacks separations and I really love separations, but still, it’s a cool theme. At least I know that next time you go to your optician he won’t spoon your eyes out and and put them in a jar labelled ‘Rendered Useless Due To Excessive Reading Of Badly Designed Blog’. Remember me when that does not happen, Zonk. Every time you remember me in the context of your still-unimpaired vision, I gain a kilo. So be nice. Read my blog. Go to your optician, check that your eyes are A-Okay, and think ‘Kitu’. The more often you do it, the sooner I’ll fulfill my personal goal of reaching the 50kg-mark.
But seriously, Zonk, I like this theme because I can have a proper navigation menu, display links on my homepage to blogs and sites I regularly visit, and featured posts and images. I’m not sure if I like this displaying of excerpts on the homepage rather than whole posts..I’ll have to spend some time with it and then decide.
Also, on the top right part of the homepage, next to the featured image, you’ll find a Random Advice Generator that I can update anytime I want to. Which means I won’t have to embed advice in posts anymore woohoo! :) I’ve always wanted a Random Advice Generator on my blog.
Now, I need you to tell me if you like this new theme of mine, or if you think I should switch back to the old one. Also, if you can think of anything that can go under the Random Advice Generator, anything I can add, do tell me. The Top Post thing is temp. I will replace that with something funner eventually.
So tell me. Please do. It will take you less than a minute.