220321 – Morning Pages

Short rant. Better ignored.

7:13. Andheri.

I just woke up and my eyes are groggy and all that. Nothing new with that. What is new is that I am not sure what to write. A lot has been happening with me and there is this general sense of overwhelm that’s shrouded me. Things both at work and personal level. Things at heart and head level. I dont even know how to report those here.

Anyhow. Moving on. Monday is here. That means the world is back to action. And that means I need to be back in action as well. And that means I will have a busy sort of a day. And that’s a good thing. I am thinking I will try and fast today and if I am busy, I can often forget about food and all. So that.

In other news, I made the first draft of SoG Grant live. Here. Read it if you want to and lemme know what you think. I will formalise it over the next few days and then roll out. This is one of those ways to pay it forward.

I dont have anything else to write or report. The head’s way too blank. Maybe I will write more tomorrow.

And, here’s the streaks.

  • Morning Pages – 101. I made a mistake in count. This is the 101th post for Morning Pages.
  • #aPicADay – 81
  • 10K steps a day – 0.
  • OMAD – 0 (stress ate multiple meals)
  • #noCoffee – 12
  • #noCoke – 12
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

The SoG Grant (draft)

This is the first draft of this. Publishing to seek feedback from people. Please do let me know what you think.

TLDR: I am committing Rs. 100K a year of my money to create a microgrant for people that may need money to pursue any project of their liking. Read more for more details.

Hello! Lemme talk of some themes that have shaped me and my life.

A. This couplet from Kabir.
I don’t know when or where I read this first, but this couplet resonates with me like nothing else has ever. Here it goes…

Sai itna dijiye, jaame kutumb samaay,
main bhookha naa rahoon, sadhu na bhookha jaaye

Attributed to the poet Kabir, though I am not sure.

This translates loosely into, “Oh, Lord, give me enough to take care of my family. Enough that I don’t sleep hungry and yet have enough left to support others that may ask me for it.”

B. Giants, their shoulders, and their kindness.
All my life, I have benefitted immensely from the kindness, generosity, and shoulders of strangers and giants. Whatever little I know or whatever tiny I have has come to me because I was a beneficiary of an unexpected gift. Each time, some chance brought me close to strangers and they were unnaturally kind to support me and literally changed the trajectory of life altogether. From my admission into MDI to my first real “education” with Raj at CLA; to the startup with Kunal; to Suvi’s blind faith in me; to the mad dream that we had at 5X5; to Social Wavelength’s risky bet on me; to Rajesh Sir’s support for C4E and me, each “career” move happened because these literal strangers trusted me and allowed me to make mistakes. I was on a long leash and I could learn all that I wanted to. and countless others that have helped me do things.

Even in terms of people that sort of mentored me (the list is a mile long and if I were to make that in public, this post would run in hundreds of pages), they did so without expecting anything in return. They were truly the giants that gave me their shoulders to stand on and look farther. The following quote, again I dont know by who describes me the best…

“If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants.”

More about it here.

It essentially means that giants (and strangers) that have achieved a lot more than me have allowed me to learn from their experience and build my life on top of their work.

Isnt all life that? Arent all great innovations not built on top of what others have done prior? That.

C. I stumbled on this post from Thejesh where he has created a “no strings attached” microgrant in memory of his mother.
The idea is fairly simple. He created a tiny corpus from his savings to create opportunities for people that are little less lucky than him. He says, “I am creating a yearly $1000₹80,000 ₹1,00,000 micro-grant to support something meaningful. Grant is named after my mother – Nagarathna. The reason for grant could be anything as long its meaningful to you and people around. Though I prefer free and open source or creative commons projects, It’s not a must. It’s a no strings attached grant.”

I have always thought about giving back paying it forward, even though my own house has never been in order. All the “projects” I created as C4E partnerships were attempts at paying it forward. However, since I know that that model is essentially broken, I need to find an alternative to continue to pay forward. Thejesh’s post comes at the right time. And thus, the SoG Grant!

So, combining A, B and C, presenting The SoG Grant!

Hello, SoG Grant!

Inspired by Thejesh and others that have created microgrants (see this on Github), I hereby create The SoG Grant.

What is The SoG Grant?
SoG Grant is an attempt to pay it forward by supporting the ones that are less fortunate than I.

What is the corpus of this grant?
I will start with a total corpus of Rs. 100K from my personal savings. If I get more people to back this up, I will add on top of this. If you want to help me grow this basket, lemme know.

Update (4 Apr 2021): Krishna from Tezi.app has agreed to add another 20K to the corpus. He wants to support people building for SMEs in India.

So, as of now, it’s Rs. 120K per year. This could be given to one person or split among at most three.

Who can apply for this? Who is eligible?
I really really want this grant to help people that need it. I am not sure how I would validate the financial status but I will find a way as I go along.

No, it will NOT be easy for you to get this grant. I will make the selection process extremely difficult to weed out non-serious applicants.

Who is NOT eligible?
You have to prove your intention. While I am a dreamer and chase lofty goals that are beyond my reach, for the grant, I want to support people that are damn serious about it. You will have to prove that you have skin in the game.

What kind of projects / people would I support?
You could be whoever and you may want to do whatever. However, I’ll admit that I have a bias towards creators and education. So if you seek money for creating something or pursuing some course / education, I am more likely to support you.

Some projects that are great fit for this are…

  1. You want to take up a course that you cant afford
  2. You want to cut a music album and need money to pay for the studio etc.
  3. You want to write a book / script etc and need to pay your bills while you write it.

Please note that this is an indicative list only and the grant is available to anyone under the sun. As long as i believe what you do has the potential to make a difference.

Who can apply?
Anyone. From India.
I don’t know how to do the logistics of expanding it beyond borders.

What’s the catch?
No catch. I dont want you to thank me. I dont want you to include the C4E logo in what you do. I dont care if you forget me. All I care for is that you are accountable to me. That’s it. And no, I dont care about output. As long as you are good with the input, I am ok.

How can you apply?
I will announce more details over the next few days. I am hoping for the following timelines…

  • Applications Open: April
  • Application Deadline: May
  • Decision and Disbursal: June

In case you need this money urgently, do write in and I will make exceptions.

So that’s about it. Do let me know should you have any questions. More on the next few days.

Thank You!

210321 – Morning Pages

A longish rant on things that are fucking with my head. You may want to skip. You’ve been warned.

8:21. Starbucks, Versova.

This will be a rant. I guess a long one at that. Let’s see when I get around to writing it. The next engagement is at 1030 so I have plenty of time. Please bear. Skip if you have to. Shit’s happening around me and I need to talk to someone and there’s no one but this blog. Of course no specifics here. Will talk in as broad strokes as I can. I am listening to this on loop as I write this.

Lemme start with a simple metaphor that someone once told me (I think it was Hemant). He said think of a giant, spacious room bang in the middle of the city, next to a busy road. The room has floor-to-ceiling windows that give you an expansive view of the world outside. You can open those windows in the mornings to let the sunlight and the fresh morning air come in and make the place a pleasant one. But, if you forget to close those windows during the day, the freshness and the morning cheer will get replaced by the incessant honking of the traffic, dust, and grime from the world out there and may be some stench, some stink from the world beyond your house. Would you as a logical person, not close these windows when it starts getting noisy?

That!

I need to start closing the windows to my life and brain. Lemme elaborate. Thing is, I think of so many ideas, things, businesses, impact areas, and whatnot that are so forward-looking that it takes forever for those to reach a conclusion. Like it would happen with almost anything, with time, some most of those fall along the way (plenty of reasons – I am unable to keep up, the people I work with realizing that I am not the best partner, the timing is not right, I lose steam, I find a shinier object, shit happens, etc etc.). As a result, I often fail to close those loops. And thus, the metaphorical windows to my brain are left often. And instead of helping my brain get fresh air, I am left with the noise and dust. The windows need closing!

You know, I have often thought about myself being that person that had immense potential to do things that could change the world but I feel that I am not living upto that with what I do. I merely hop from one thing to another and along the way I leave behind unfinished projects, half-baked ideas and unfulfilled promises to the world, friends, connections and myself. When I die (which I hope is not before I am 120), I would probably look like that sculptor that has a million unfinished pieces in his repertoire, each with a potential of becoming a David. It would be such a crime that I would waste all the potential. Assuming I have the potential.

I mean I can focus on one thing, one statue that goes onto outshine David and others of the ilk but my magic, my method, the madness comes from trying new things, new experiences, talking to new people, seeding new ideas, seeing new possibilities, and well, chasing the new shiny toy. Lol, the number of times I used “new” in that sentence has to be a world record of sorts.

So, I dont want to stop creating new things, opening new doors. After all, each thing I have in life is a result of all the million shots that I take without any purpose or anything. So that’s not stopping.

What I will do is try and close each loop window that I open in a predictable amount of time. Or once I reach some sort of conclusion. Or when I know the time has come to move on (which is tough to know to be honest). But I will close for sure. I think I have written about this earlier as well on one of the SoGs (I think). Let’s see if I find a link when I come around to editing this. Can’t find.

Also, while I will close all the new loops, new projects, new ideas and all that going forward, I know I cant roll back time to undo all that I should’ve done. I’ll see which ones I can. Even if they aren’t that many.

This is also a good time to tell myself to revisit Dr. Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life, a book that has been like a ‘bible of life’ of sorts for me. The funny thing is that a lot of intelligent, aware, educated people don’t agree with him. But to me, he makes immense sense and everytime I read it, I take away a life lesson from it.

The antidote to the shit in head, I think the rule that is most pertinent is about setting my own house in order before I try and change the world.

I mean I do want to change the world and each thing I do is from that lens but since I am unable to close the ideas, the loops and other things, I am unable to make even an iota of dent.

I think this is about it. No, I am not any lighter since I started writing this. But I do know that I have vented out and I can move onto the next things. Like Dr. Peterson says in Rule 6, I need to take responsibility for the misery that has been inflicted upon me by my actions / inactions. Here on, I shall take responsibility and put the house in order. I have to play a role in helping the world become better.

Ok enough. Time to get on with the day. Here’s streaks.

  • Morning Pages – 99
  • #aPicADay – 80
  • 10K steps a day – 1. The monthly average is 9K steps. I’ll see if I can take this up to 10K by the time month ends.
  • OMAD – 0 (stress ate ice-cream late night). Trying to fast today. Though I am tempted to stuff myself with food.
  • #noCoffee – 11
  • #noCoke – 11
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

Over and out.

200321 – Morning Pages

A shortPost on how I spent yesterday and what I plan to do today.

8:52. I just woke up. I slept early but slept for long. Which is ok.

So the highlight has to be that I successfully did a 48-hour fast. It was surprisingly easy. To a point that I think I can do it often. In March, I’ve tried this multiple times and I have failed every time, except this one. In fact, I want to try and move to that 6 meals a week kind of diet where I eat once a day and then keep a 48-hour fast. Let’s see how it goes. The critical thing would be to not eat today till about 2 PM when I will have the meal of the day and then not eat anything till 2 tomorrow. Why 2? I saw an Instagram post by Dave Asprey where he says that’s apparently the human gut is designed to work the best at 2 PM. Let’s see how that affects me.

Ok. Moving to the next things.

For a change, I want to take a break and not do any actual work. Lol. Arti would be so so happy reading this!

I have a few options.

a, I can either spend the day reviewing various things / projects that I am working on and the next steps that I need to take on those. I typically do this once every month towards the end and for some reason, I feel like doing this today.

b, I can just sit and read. Since I need to take a break from actual work, I can do this. On reading, I am back to physical books. I recently bought two – Louise Hay’s You Can Heal Yourself and Morgal Housel’s Psychology of Money. Both are in the self-help category and I think that’s what I need right now. Let’s see if I can finish reading those today (at the speed at which I read, I think I can). Let’s see how this goes.

c, I can go for a super-long walk. You know a 20K-step walk and plugin to some podcast or something. In the past, I have wanted to walk all the way from Andheri to Siddhi Vinayak. I think I did manage it once (see next para). Though I can’t recall with surety. May be I will do it again today.

I don’t know which one would I choose. But I do know that I will go to Starbucks in a bit and get done with a work call that ends at 12. See I can never not work 😀

Wait.
Here’s a thing.
I just realized that I suck at remembering these teeny weeny things.
Which is ok. I just need to ensure that I note those things. For example, thanks to my Roam, I discovered that I walked on the 24th of Sep 2020. And I have also listed things that I thought of when I walked. Wow! I am impressed in myself ;P

Ok. Enough. The words are clearly not coming out. Time to take a break, shower, and go to Starbucks.

See you guys tomorrow.

And as I end this, here’s my streak list.

  • Morning Pages – 98
  • #aPicADay – 79
  • 10K steps a day – 0. Could only manage 7K
  • OMAD – 2
  • #noCoffee – 10
  • #noCoke – 10
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

190321 – Morning Pages

Quick and yet longish post. Mostly in response to a longish phone call with a friend about morning pages.

6:48
I woke up a minute ago. And I slept at like 3 AM. For some reason, I was not sleepy at all last night. For a large part, I couldn’t figure out why. And then it dawned onto me that I had an iced tea at around 9. And since I have been away from coffee for all these days, maybe this tea played havoc with my schedule? Maybe. Maybe not.

So, morning pages. Quite a few things to write and talk about. Lest I forget, here’s what I want to talk about. Screen Time. COVID. Chat with PM. Book2.

Let’s go.

Screen Time.
Yesterday I met someone for a walk and while talking about things, I realized that I have been spending an insane amount of time on my computer and my phone. Here’s a screenshot.

And this is down 24% from last week! I have to have to reduce this. A deeper analysis revealed that I am spending a lot of time on Chess, Twitter, and Instagram. I will probably uninstall these. I mean I anyway don’t have time and I definitely don’t want to “invest” that time on these non-value-add things. I mean they do add value. But at this stage, I have other things to work on.

So that.

Next up is COVID. The number of new cases in Mumbai is touching 3000. I am alarmed, scared, and confused. I don’t know if this is a second wave or not but now I do know that I will also get it one of these days. There are so many people that I know that got COVID in the last few days. And each of these people has been super super careful. To a point that some weren’t even stepping out. I just hope that I don’t get it. Not because I am worried that something weird would happen to me. But because I meet a million people and I don’t want to be the one spreading. I mean I will definitely be the superspreader!

This one is important. I had a longish chat with PM about various things. We talked about my first ever video on Youtube, Founder Thesis Podcast, Investor Thesis Podcast, Life, Morning Pages, and a lot more. While the others may not be relevant, lemme talk about our chat about morning pages per se. For context, PM is one of the daily readers of my pages. So what he says carries a lot of weight. He said, and I agree with each thing he said, that…

  • a, the morning pages have started to get boring. Agree.
  • b, these pages seem to paint a picture of a person that is not happy with his life (he did not use the word unhappy but he implied that). PM, correct me if I am wrong.
  • c, I need to stop with the streak. It adds no value to the reader.
  • d, I need to restart work on #book2. 😀
  • e, I can write things that are a lot more value-adding. For example, I am working on a podcast where I want to chat with investors. PM mentioned that I could write about that and showcase my thinking on that.

Lemme try and address each.
No, I don’t mean to give explanations or defend anything but lemme think out loud about each thing he mentioned.

Boring – agree. Even as a writer, I feel that my pages are getting repetitive. A simple explanation is that on a day-to-day basis, very few things change. So I don’t know what to report per se. Assuming that morning pages are supposed to be a journal. I think the original intent with which Julia created the idea of morning pages was to merely exercise your writing muscle and not create something new each day. I am not sure. I will get back to the book and figure it out. The other dimension is that I don’t really write these for anyone to consume. I mean I do post these on a public forum but these are not supposed to, lest you get feedback. That is exactly what’s happening right now. Friends are well-meaning creatures and they want you to do well and they give you feedback (negative or positive) and you shift behavior! That is what morning pages is not supposed to be. So, that.

One of his suggestions was to write more on book2 and less on journal per se. I agree. But the way I can dump my thoughs, I may not be able to write new things. But I will try. Not today. My first meeting is at 8 and then I have back to back things.

Unhappy person. This is important. Till a few years ago, I was the kinds who could find a problem with even Maryada Purushotam, Bhagwan Shree Raam. I mean his character is fairly problematic if you were to look at him objectively. The point is that I would find problems and then crib about those all the time. Most people that would interact with me would be able to see that. I was shrouded in negativity. Not negativity per se but critical. I hope you get the drift.

Once I realised that I was cribbing, ranting all the time, I worked very hard to change my personality. I became a people pleaser, I stopped voicing my opinions that could be critical, I avoided confrontations, I ceded control, I stopped questioning things that were wrong, I got aware of what I put out on public platforms. And eventually with time, started getting lot more equanimous with things. If someone did something that I did not approve of, rather than passing my opinion, I would zoom out and try to look at things from that person’s perspective. And that in itself would solve half the things. I think I have become a lot better and I want to remain that.

So there is no way I want the morning pages to postulate that I am a negative person that only rants and cribs and is struggling with things. I could write a lot more about things that I could consider happy but I think writing allows me to think better and I often need to think about things that I need to change. And these are often the things that are broken. And may be this is why the pages come across as unhappy rants. I will see if I want to change the tone or fix. Let’s see.

Next. Streaks. Well, here it is. Totally ignoring PM’s opinion.

  • Morning Pages – 97
  • #aPicADay – 78
  • 10K steps a day – 2. I actually did 19K steps!
  • OMAD – 1. Yay! In fact, the last meal was around 11 PM on 17th! If I can manage today, I would have done a 48-hour fast!
  • #noCoffee – 9
  • #noCoke – 9
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

Thing is, if I publish things on a public medium, I feel a tad more compelled to stick to it.

#book2. I don’t know when I’d be able to start on this. But I do know and do realize that I need to get started. I have realized that I crave for nothing but respect (not fame; respect) and I can not command respect. I need to earn it. And you earn it by the virtue of your actions. And your output. And not just thoughts. The world values outputs. Not ideas. So I need to move my ass.

Value-Adding Things. I agree on this one. I can ensure that each post adds value to the reader. But then, do I need to worry about the reader with the morning pages? I am not sure. This is my space and these are my reflections and ideas and thoughts. Like I said, the reason I make these public is because I like the idea of public accountability. I do want to write things that move the mountains. But I think that’s not what the morning pages is for.

So yeah. That’s it for the day. See you tomorrow.

Over and out.

@PM, do read and lemme know what you think. I think I am better when it comes to communicating with the written word and please please please don’t hold feedback and inputs. I value each piece of input that you’ve shared with me.

180321 – Morning Pages

The morning pages has evolved into a friend of sorts where I go and rant and cry and wail about things that I cant talk to anyone else about. Here’s one such post.

6:38 AM

For all the ‘living in public’ that I want to do, there’s something that I want to talk to someone about and I don’t know who to. And it involves someone else and without putting names or context, it would be of no use. So, at some point of time in life, I want to be able to write about it in public. But as of today, it will go on my echoChamber. It is big enough that it’s making me rethink my entire way of working / living / thinking / doing. Anyhow. Later.

Before I go ahead, the track of the day is this.

Next. The folks at Producerland announced their lineup of people that they have selected. I saw their profiles and I am slightly disappointed with it. Of course, one large reason is that I did not get through, but the other big one is that a lot of those people are from established production companies in India. I don’t think those people need networking. They are anyway in the market with access to capital, ideas, and talent. It is people like me that need it. Oh, Debasmita, the writer and producer at Bin Bulaaye made it. So that is nice. I don’t work with her anymore but she is exactly the kind that will benefit from this. Super ideas, talented at multiple things, great human being, interested in telling stories that have legs beyond song and dance.

Oh, while writing this, an epiphany happened. I use this blog as a friend. In the sense, I talk about things that I don’t know who else to talk about. Most of my friends do not understand the world I operate in. My family has no clue what I do. My Board of Directors often does not get context. The significant other is almost non-existent. And in absence of all these, I think it is this blog that gives me some sort of grounding. I can blurt out what’s on my head. I get the load out of the way and I can do more things. In fact, each morning, I look up to waking up and writing on morning pages. I often make notes while I sleep, about things that I would write the next day. And then I write! And then I feel so light that I could fly away ;P Ok. Enough.

So, food. Remember how I spoke about my izzat being at stake yesterday? I said…

I have to have to HAVE TO avoid hospitals at all costs. I need to get going. So, here’s the thing. I will gun for a 2-days fast. And then I will go on for as long as I can. Really. This time I will do it. Izzat ki baat hai. I will eventually add some sort of workout to my regimen. But I need to get the hernia operated on before that. Maybe I will start with dance or yoga?

From Morning Pages on 17th Mar.

I ate breakfast, a lunch, an evening snack, an ice-cream around dinner, and then a dinner! There is no way I am going to lose weight :(. The saving grace is that I did walk some 14K steps. And that too purposefully. Phew!

The excuse I gave myself is that I had a COVID scare and I need to eat and get nutrition but now the test has come out and it tells me that I am negative. So that’s ok. And yeah, the test is as uncomfortable as you imagine it to be. I hate hospitals!

Wait. I will try again today. I will try and not eat. Let’s see how it goes. I just need to get started.

I think this is about it. No. Wait. Another thing. Yesterday I learned the importance of money. Or the lack of it.

While I was fuming and I did not have anyone to talk about it, I took to Twitter and posted a rant about how I am gareeb and all that. The trigger was that that there are way too many things I want to do and none of them will probably make money and thus I will have to keep pouring money into those things and that means I will need to have infinite money. Right now, I am very far from it. And there’s no way I can seem to find a solution to my money woes. I mean I have some work on my plate these days and if this continues, I will be ok. But the large, infinite source of capital that I may need is still missing 🙁

While I was wailing in misery, Ajeet Sir had an interesting perspective on my quandary. Here…

From AK’s tweet here.

Now, this is super duper interesting. Multiple reasons. A, he validated that I have the ability! Yay! External validation #ftw! B, he slapped me on the face that I dont put in the effort. I dont know how to put efforts. I need to get out of the current financial mess that I have got myself into and along the way find an answer to this. I think I need to relook at how I operate in life. I think I am ok with taking risks. The thing that I suck at is ability to convert those risks into actionable, tangible steps that take me closer to where I want to be. I need some sort of a coach or something. Damn…

Anyhow, I am done with the pages. Feel a little relieved that what I was earlier. Let’s see how today is. So that. And to end the post, here’s the streaks…

  • Morning Pages – 96
  • #aPicADay – 77
  • 10K steps a day – 1
  • OMAD – 0
  • #noCoffee – 8
  • #noCoke – 8
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

170321 – Morning Pages

A report on how I spent yesterday. No forward-looking statements in this one, except my attempt at fasting for at least 48 hours.

7:16

I just woke up. Still tired. Groggy. Listening to Jagjit Singh talking about Teri Khushboo wale khat.

I got my COVID test yesterday. It was painful, at least for me. I am told that it’s not really bad and I can see why it’s not bad. But to be honest but then my pain tolerance is pathetic. More than physical pain, my tolerance for any other kind of pain is even lesser. Like I was at the emergency ward at Kokilaben when I took the test (yeah, the swabs for COVID tests are collected at the emergency ward) and I saw various emergency cases being rolled into the hospital. There was an elderly woman who wasn’t breathing. A young girl had fractured her legs. A patient was being moved from emergency to general ward.

And since the test is done by the doctors in the emergency, I had to wait for about an hour. Which is understandable. And then the test was done. And it was painful af, like I told you guys already. And no, this test was not required. I am not at risk but I still wanted to rule out any possibility. So that.

But when I was filling the form at the hospital, they asked me to fill in the names of two people that they could inform in case of emergency. This is when you realize who really matters for you. You know, who you want around you when you are probably facing a life and death situation. And truth be told, I could think of just one name and I put that one name. I mean I wanted to put my sister’s name but she’s like a million miles away and there’s no way she can be bothered in case of emergency.

So that. The other highlight of the day has to be all the food that I ate. You know, like a regular human being, I had breakfast, lunch, evening snack, dinner, and few in-betweens. I think the reason I feel groggy this morning is probably because I ate all those carbs and processed things shit. I have to have to HAVE TO avoid hospitals at all costs. I need to get going. So, here’s the thing. I will gun for a 2-days fast. And then I will go on for as long as I can. Really. This time I will do it. Izzat ki baat hai. I will eventually add some sort of workout to my regimen. But I need to get the hernia operated on before that. Maybe I will start with dance or yoga?

The other thing I want to talk about is my inability to afford a better house. I’ve been meaning to shift from the current house and get to one that is a little more spacious. And I want to live in a newish building. But then aukaat tells me that I cant. I also have to get it off my head that I actually saw some houses with a broker. I almost finalized a house that was as plush as houses get in Mumbai and at least as spacious as I wanted. I made an offer that the landlord accepted. I had almost given the token to block it. But at the last minute, I pulled back. I had to apologize to the broker and the new landlord and the universe. I felt really bad and it was one of those tough decisions that I’ve had to make.

If I zoom back and look at it from up top, I think my decision-making muscle was fucked. I should have considered the costs upfront. And then never got into a hunt. Then, while I looked for a place, I should’ve done the maths and not went to houses that I couldn’t afford. Then, even when I looked at places, I shouldn’t have made an offer. I should’ve thought about it. And once I made the offer, I shouldn’t have cancelled. Zubaan ki damn keemat, bro! Anyhow. So that.

Work seems to be picking up on all the projects that I am on. This means I will have some more money to play with. And cause movements with. Yay! I just need to figure out how these continue to grow and accrue.

So that. And to end the post, here’s the streaks…

  • Morning Pages – 95
  • #aPicADay – 76
  • 10K steps a day – 0 (couldn’t manage 10K)
  • OMAD – 0 (ate a million meals)
  • #noCoffee – 7
  • #noCoke – 7
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

With this, its over and out. See you guys tomorrow.

160321 – Morning Pages

Quick update on the COVID scare, chasing rockstars across the world, inability to stay hungry for 48 hours. And more.

7:00. Hello hello. Morning!

So I got the COVID-19 scare yesterday.

Someone I met on Wednesday of last week got COVID. And I was in a closed room with him for about an hour. And then I sat in that room and ate. And that meant I am at high risk. Since then I’ve met quite a few people (and I have been to various Starbucks outlets). If I had to trace all the people I met and all the places I was to, the list would run into miles!

As I was making that list, thankfully I was told that they traced their source of infection and it’s from someone they met after they met me. So I am more or less safe. Phew!

Even though I don’t have any symptoms, I am more or less safe. I would still get myself tested to be sure. I owe it to all those people that I met that I am not a carrier and if I am, I need to alert those people.

Also, apart from this gentleman, there are few more people that I know that are really close that have been infected. So, the pandemic is clearly not over. Those numbers of some 1500-2000 daily cases don’t paint the real extent of the pandemic. And since everyone is almost out and about and is being careless about things, I am imposing some news rules on myself. Here they are.

  • 1/ Avoid closed, confined spaces for a few days. Goodbye, Starbucks :(.
  • 2/ Never take off the mask even if it’s a meeting that requires me to show my face.
  • 3/ Get a lot more particular about using a sanitizer.
  • 4/ Start working on my immunity (you know, Vitamin C, workout, etc). Lol. Workout.

I am also closeting myself at home for the next 2-3 days, just to be sure. That means, my productivity would take a hit. And that means I need to thank the decision to buy a writing table all those years ago (I think I bought my table in 2014 or something when I lived with Satya at Nahar). Back then I was clearly the guy who liked the idea of buying things. I don’t know when I became that pseudo-minimalist that did not want anything in the house and is ok with just a mattress plonked onto the floor and call it home.

Also, I have realized that the kind of life I live, I meet so many people all the time. If I were to ever get it, I would be at very very high risk. You know, super-spreader.

Anyhow. Moving on.

Here’s the track of the day…

Jagjit Singh was a magician!

While listening to Jagjit Singh today, I realized something. I want to be a part of the crew for a rockstar (or a religious leader, a musician, a speaker, or someone that people across the world are willing to pay money for) that travels the world. I mean, do a search on Youtube for ‘Jagjit Singh in Concert’ and you’d see that he’s been to EACH corner of the world with his crew. If you see some of the videos, you’d spot similar faces as backing musicians. I am sure even the crew would be more or less same. What if I am part of such a crew? I could actually be traveling the world and will get to entertain people and make money and all that. Everything I want in life will happen!

I remember when I did events, we used a talent management agency and people from that agency would travel along with the artists. While they added almost zero value, they did get to travel. I need to figure if I could become someone like that. #note2self.

But wait.

I don’t want a new career option per se. I need to get some sort of a war chest. Right now the coffers are empty. This is one of those rare times when I want to say no and want to be ok with where I am. Rather than chasing the rockstars, I will merely figure what I can augment that allows me to travel and meet more people with what I am doing. Let’s see. Another #note2self.

In other news, I had decided yesterday that I’d try to fast for 48 hours. I was ok till about 8 PM (about 20 hours) but then thanks to all the thoughts in my head about the COVID thingy, I got stressed enough to order food on a whim. And I ate. And then I ate some chips. And then I ate another full meal. And I ate a dessert. In all, I would’ve had some 2000 calories. Grrr. There is no way am getting fit. Any of you has any ideas?

Coming to streaks…

  • Morning Pages – 94
  • #aPicADay – 75 (at least)
  • 10K steps a day – 0 (couldn’t manage 10K)
  • OMAD – 1 (ate between the window of 8 and 10 PM)
  • #noCoffee – 6
  • #noCoke – 6
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

And with that, it’s a warp for the morning pages. Time to get some work done. From home where I live. Damn!

PS: I must talk about home. And how where I live is not really home. Let’s see when I get to it.

150321 – Morning Pages

A report on how I spent my Sunday. And a challenge to self for the next 48 hours.

7:24. Mumbai.

Just woke up. Eyes are fogged but I feel ok. So that’s cool.

Yesterday was cool. Was actually good. I thugged it out to be honest. Went for a drive. Met friends. Ate like a pig, had some hundred meals (remember OMAD?), did not walk as much as I wanted to. Slept multiple times during the day. Shopped. Met a few work colleagues (without actually doing any work). Basically, took it easy. And for some reason, I think I enjoyed that. So so unlike me!

Anyhow, here’s a pic from the drive to Bhavali Dam.

This is a raw image.

After the drive, met a couple of friends, even if it was for a bit. Went househunting. I know. Again. When I was looking for a place, I saw 4-5 options and when I was going through the alternatives, I realised that I dont like any houses that are in old buildings. I need the building to be a virgin. Lol. So, lets see when I find a new place.

I also went shopping. To my regular jaunt at Cottonworld. It is at these places that you realize that you’ve put on weight like a bloated pig. Even the person at the shop could see that I have put on weight (advantages and problems of being a regular). I anyhow had to buy clothes (I hadn’t bought in a while and the ones I had, had so many holes in em that I was getting judged by even strangers). As always, I was in and out of the place in less than 10 minutes and I bought a few shirts and a pair of shorts. I just need to buy a pair of pants that I can wear to work meetings and some tees that I can wear on a day-to-day basis. And I am set for the next 2-3 years.

COVID is making a come back in Mumbai. That means we are staring at another lockdown. In the last one, I think I was ok with how things were around. But if there’s another lockdown I don’t think I’d be able to cope up. Or may be I will. This time I actually have work that will keep me busy. So let’s see.

So what else? Not sure. Lemme reach Starbucks before I publish. May be I will write a bit for book2?

At Starbucks. Just called for a tea. I think I know what I would attempt. A 48-hour reset. Last meal was at around 1 AM last night today morning. So that means I will eat on Wednesday night or something. Let’s see if I last that long. I mean I can, if I have something happening. I tend to eat a lot when I am getting bored or when I am stressed. I need to keep myself occupied and I think I can manage without eating. Let’s see how it goes.

As I wrap this up, yesterday was a bad day for my streaks. I couldn’t do OMAD. Neither could I walk around for 10K steps. Rest I could. Here’s a report…

  • Morning Pages – 93
  • #aPicADay – XX (will count at some later date)
  • 10K steps a day – 0 (did about 7K but that was regular walking and not purposeful one)
  • OMAD – 0 (ate like a Pig)
  • #noCoffee – 5
  • #noCoke – 5
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

With this, over and out.

140321 – Morning Pages

Quick and dirty update from how I spent Saturday. Wish I the time to write more. The day was among the best.

6:24 AM, Mumbai.
Completed this somewhere on the Nashik highway at 10ish.

This is going to be one of those pages where I want to write a lot (I think I have a lot to write) but since I am short of time, I will not be able to get a lot of words in. I have to be at someplace real early. I had to be out and about by 6 AM, to be honest, but thanks to some snafu, I am still at home and that means I can get some words in. If not a lot, I can at least get a ToC of sorts in. Yeah, I have a table of contents of things that I want to talk about.

Here it is.

A. SG’s interview. There’s apparently some interview that I gave when #tnks came out where I have bared my soul. A stranger can read that and get to know who I am and what I think about. In that, I have even talked about my hatred for pets! To make matters worse, it has my photo on it. I need to do something about it. I can’t have my opinions floating around on the Internet like that. Lol. The entire life has been lived in making my life an open and public affair with this blog 😀

Need to find that interview and “fix” it.

B. Poker. A few days ago I was in this weird mood where I did not know what to do. None of my friends was around. Taarak Mehta felt like a drag. Brooklyn Nine-Nine was not funny no more. I couldn’t sleep. I had had enough of everything. I somehow remembered my love for Poker and after I don’t know how many months, I put money on a poker game. It was on Pokerstars and I sucked as bad I did when I played regularly.

Poker is one of those things that I think I can be really good at. There is an element of luck but you can control it to a large part. It just needs two things – knack for the game and the time required to build that knack. I suspect poker is like chess. You need to have some sort of inclination and “gift” for it and then you need to back it with consistent and focussed effort. You know, more you play, better you get.

Wait. Isnt this true with everything and anything? I guess!

C. SoG Grant. I saw a post on my Instagram last night and I reached this page on Thejesh GN’s blog. He’s started a grant in his mother’s name where he’s supporting independent creators on anything that they want to work on. I love the idea. I am so inspired that I decided on the spot that I want to start something. When I was growing up, I did not have the patron or the resources to chase what I wanted to. Now that I have some resources, I want to support others. An annual grant could be a great thing. Need to put things in motion. #note2self

D. Swiggy. Last night I was hungry and I decided to order something to eat. Good thing is that I ordered on Swiggy and that means the order was never delivered. Which is ok. I understand the business is run by people and they can often fuck up. But the way they handle these things is what needs fixing. The customer service is non-existent and the way they speak with you, they lack empathy. They assume that an order is a physical thing and if you refund the money, the customer is ok. They forget that it’s food delivery and the person on the other side could be hungry. And its well known fact across the world that when you are hungry, you are not the person you are. And you need to talk to hungry, angry, irate people in a different tone / manner etc. I promise I will make it a mini-project and try and teach these people how to be customer-centric and have some empathy.

So that.

E. NA. I also want to talk about this woman, NA, that I met via Lunchclub yesterday. Out of 30 odd people that LC has matched me with, she was only the second that I had wanted to meet.

And I goaded her into meeting me.
And we met.
And it was awesome.
NA is one of the finds of this year so far for me. I hope I can become friends with her and get her to do something with me. More about her on some other day. Today am kinda short of time.

F. Misc. Things that I want to talk about but don’t have time for. 1, I pet a dog at a friend’s place. My first time ever. 2, The realization that I am #foreverAlone and unlucky in love. Every woman that I seem to get close to tends to get away from me. The pattern repeats where these women think that am a loser and move on. 3, The feeling of heaviness and general lethargy and my desperate attempts to get over those. 4, Hunt for a new house (which I am hoping is a little better than the one I am on). 5, I am not sure. I forgot 😀

G. Streaks. Here.

  • Morning Pages – 92
  • #aPicADay – XX (will count at some later date)
  • 10K steps a day – 1
  • OMAD – 3 (thanks to Swiggy, the streak remains unbroken)
  • #noCoffee – 5
  • #noCoke – 5
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0 (adding this from today on)
  • #book2 – 0 (I REALLY need to start on this!)

So yeah, thats about it. More tomorrow. On a Monday.