Thursday, 1 April 2010

Bright side of the dark side*

Have you heard the Sunscreen Song? For those who haven’t or want to enjoy it one more time,this would be a good place to give it a listen. Once you do, the post will be easier to fathom.

The past few days I have been living the Sunscreen Song, or at least parts of it. The funny bit is that I realised it this April fool’s day. Life maybe enjoying a joke at my expense but it can’t fault me for not being a good sport about it. Anyhoo… Lamentations will be reserved for another day. Today I will tell you about my sunscreen experience.

Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.

The day started with reminiscing of certain old days with a friend who I had lost touch with over time and some disagreements. And then came online scrabble and we bonded over our shared love for words, transcending the distance of geography, time and life’s experience. Felt good to know there are those who are looking out for me, irrespective of our shared past (or maybe because of it). I don’t know how it is with most people but I have had some friends say good bye for reasons reasonable and some silly, but I have been blessed with so many who were kind enough to forgive and forget, who grew wise enough to know that people change and were large-hearted enough to accommodate the divide. Oh yes, they also knew how and when to say sorry. They are the one’s who’d be around even when you are not looking.

Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll have children, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance. So are everybody else's.

I am a worrier, and despite that, or because of it, I appreciate the lines above. Last month or so I sat fretting, with renewed vigour, about my career and what turn it would take, would my attempt at starting a new venture bear fruit. Then last week, one early morning, everything changed. And now I am not so worried, or maybe I am, but just about other things. But I know, things will happen as they are meant to happen.

Then there are these lines which are my favourite. Don't feel guilty if you don't know what you want to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don't

Growing up I and most of my contemporaries were chided for being clueless if by 15 we hadn’t decided what we “wanted to do with our lives”. People close to me still despair (but none as much as I) about where my life’s headed. V has tried to mark an outline for me which he has met with forceful resistance. I still don’t know, but I do know that I want it to be interesting and full of adventure.

Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.

I can’t help laughing at myself, every time I hear these words. Primarily because I love dispensing advice, carefully disguised, of course. Upon introspection, I realise how loud these lyrics ring true. Don’t we all embellish our advice (not the ones on market investment and angina pain, mind you!) just a little bit to suit the circumstances, hoping to save the receiver a possible heart ache and relive an episode of our life to revel in the happiness it brought us or wonder what we could have done so that it played out differently.

Which brings me to this: Don't worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blindside you at 4 p.m. on some idle Tuesday.

* Inspiration can come knocking on the door from strange quarters at times. Take for example the title of the entry today. Came across this brilliant line in a cartoon show the name of which eludes me. It's about this little girl who is caught in a zombie land of sorts with her weird friends and making the most of a dismal life.. or so I gathered as I didn't follow it post that episode


Charu said...

I like :)

Groovy said...

Are you being a good sport Peru?? If I know you right; then I don't think so!!
Love the song and your post - especially the first part ;-)

Latin Sardar said...

Tired and sleepy, but every bit of me likes this. And strangely, after reading this, I'm reminded of Jack Johnson's No Other Way for some reason.

"When your mind is a mess, so is mine. I cant sleep 'cause it hurts when I think. My thoughts aren't at peace with the plans that we make, chances we take,
they're not yours they're not mine..." - JJ

Shalini said...

Love the post... Makes me feel so much better about where I am, what I'm doing and how things stand.

sengemo said...

U know when i met tashi for the first time (after we were 'official') I read this song to him :) It holds a special place in our hearts, just like u hold in mine.
Always by your side (saat samundar paar though)...lots of love

relentlesslyrestless said...

Lovely post! :)
I think it's so fun when we have a sudden strike by a lightning bolt...and we suddenly feel- what are we complaining about? We have so much to be grateful for- and all in the same categories you spoke about. Thank you Perz