290621 – Morning Pages

Note on PD (and her birthday), attempt at removing caffeine from my system and ideas on what ails my eating (habits).

2906.
PD day.
Nothing else matters.

For someone that I’ve met just once in my life, she holds a very special place in my life. She’s this constant friend that I’ve had since I was I don’t know how old young. It was somewhere between 1999-2003 when I made her acquaintance first. Since then we must have exchanged hundreds of words over scores of emails. Some short, some long. Mostly irregular. Of course, she was in the US (and still is) all this while. I was shuttling across cities in India for education / work. Since she was so far away and there was little overlap in who both of us knew (except a couple of people), I felt safe in sharing the fuckeries of life with her. Mostly it was about love, work, and regular things you expect me to rant on. She had a very very patient ear (or eyes, may be) and she would always come with a word or two of consolation. To be honest, I don’t recall if her words helped me back then but I do know that I would eagerly await her emails.

I think I’ve met her all of once, somewhere in the LA, way back in 2010. And that too wasnt for too long. Maybe an hour or so. But i distinctly remember that while I was out of place and awkward, she was good and easy to talk to in IRL as she was when I sent her emails.

With time, she got busy, got married, raised a family. I got busier than her. But we have remained in touch. Very intermittently now. Far less frequency than what I would ideally like.

But I do think that this distant friend that is seeing you from an objective, unemotional, once-in-a-while manner is an important person to have in life. The friend obviously cares for you. And yet she is so far away that in case you need a shoulder to cry on, you can’t access it. You know she’s out there, somewhere and around in case you need. And you know that for all practical purposes she’s not there. I think this is what God is. Right? You have faith that there is this thing called God that is looking over you from a distance and will open doors when all is lost.

PD is like that to me.
No, not God. God doesnt exist.
She does.

Ok, moving on.

Yesterday was mad. I had so much coffee and even a Red Bull (yeah) that I couldn’t sleep. As I write this, I am groggy. Eyes won’t open up. In fact, this sleep thing has become a recurring problem and I need to solve it. I don’t know how but I need to.

Starting today, I am going back to a low-carb diet. I will also stop having coffee. No more caffeine in any form. Even at Starbucks, I will get back to green tea. The thing is when I make such promises to myself (eat less, no coffee, etc), the first two or three days are the most critical. If I can not have coffee today, if I can avoid eating carbs today, I would have won a big big battle. And if I do it successfully, I need to merely repeat it tomorrow. Once I hit the third day, I know that I have set a streak and I merely need to not break it.

So let’s see how today goes.

On the work front, I have a lot happening and there’s no time to even, you know, die! To a point that I am getting more and more people on board and yet there seems to be a lot to be done. This to be honest is a great thing. I need to find a way to scale the business. Maybe this is what they say when they talk about spotting opportunity in the times of adversity? Let’s see.

I am sure there is more that I want to talk about but the mind is so blank and so distracted that I dont know what to write. Damn the caffeine and sleep depravity. Wait something dawned onto me. I think I am one of those people that have this scarcity mindset.

Lemme explain.

Case 1.
Imagine you are stuck in the Sahara for 10 days. You are rescued and you are now in a comfortable hospital with an unlimited buffet to eat. What do you think you would do when you saw that buffet?

You would attack is right? Your body was deprived of food for so long that you want to stack it with all you have. You want to nourish it. You want to ensure that should there be another famine, you have some energy stored in your body.

Case 2.
You know you are going to a distant island that you know is inhabited. You know that you won’t have a Starbucks there. You know that you won’t have a Swiggy or a Zomato. You know that you can’t order a meal even if you have all the money in the world to order. What would you pack?

I don’t know about you but I would pack a million things that would last me as long as possible.

Case 3.
You have a big ass presentation to make. It’s going to be a long night. While some cloud kitchens operate throughout the night, you may want to munch on snacks et al. Those would be a pain to find at that hour. Plus, no coffee shops. No places to order a Red Bull from. What would you do?

At least I would order in snacks worth a thousand bucks and get ready for a long night of work.

Club all three cases. If your first instinct is to order in and save yourself from scarcity, you are like me. You want to stack. And no, stacking is not the problem. The problem starts after that. Once you know that you have a Red Bull in your refrigerator or a packet of Kurkure within your arm’s reach, you can’t help but pull open the tab, tear the crimp and eat like there’s no tomorrow.

So that.

I suffer from this. And I need to fix it. Even if I have to stay hungry for a few hours, I will try and resist the temptation to stack things in. If I am unable to deliver at work, so be it!

This. And then other issues that you typically have when you eat.

A. You know, I am the kinds who HAS to finish whatever is on my plate. If I get served 10 slices of Pizza, I will have to finish all 10. I can’t save them for later. So I need to start eating only as much as I must. Not polish the serving plate.

B. Then I am the kinds to see something on YouTube while I am eating. Which is good – multitasking. But there are two issues. You don’t really get to enjoy what you are eating. You feed only the stomach but not the soul. You are merely going thru the motions of eating. Second, you train your Pavlovian brain that food means TV. And TV means food. So every time you see something, even if you are full, you reach out to a pack of snacks. In fact, this is one of the reasons why I do not have a kitchen or stock food things at home.

So these three issues. Scarcity mindset, eat all that’s on plate, eat while engaged in other activities. I am sure there are more. Lemme discover those as we go along. Now that I am firming up a trip to the EBC, I better start working towards it. I dont want to die yet. You know.

Wah, what pep-talk! Mr. Garg!

Ok. Over and out. Long day. Here’s streaks…

  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 198
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 0
  • OMAD – 0
  • #noCoffee – 0
  • #noCoke – 110
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • Surya Namaskar – 0

180621 – Morning Pages

A quick short post on how I am feeling this Friday morning.

8:25. Up for a bit. About 10 minutes or so.

So yesterday I ate kachra after a month of clean eating. I had chips, samosa, parantha, roti, rice (mmmm) and I dont know what all. No, no egg soup. No, I did not savor the taste – you know, how I was expecting it to experience a burst of flavour in my system? That did not happen.

What I got was a stomach-ache. And I can already feel a pimple popping up on the nose.

I have to thus find a sustainable solution to this food thing. I’d like to subscribe to a service that sends me flavourful, good food that has no vegetable oils and is less on carbs. I dont know what that could be. I mean I know there are a few. It’s just that there’s this cost-benefit thingy. Will think about it and decide. You guys have any ideas? I live in Andheri West.

And no, I refuse to get a kitchen in place.

Maybe I will get one of my friends to get it cooked and Dunzo it to me? Like he did for a few days before I got the Keto dabba. Let’s see. I will think over the weekend. For the time being, I shall order in some South Indian breakfast 😀

So, for the weekend, initially, I had thought I will not carry my laptop. And thus break the streak of 187 days. But then work came up and I will have to carry it. So, good that streak will probably remain in place. Though I may not be able to write first thing in the morning. But I shall write nonetheless.

The other thing that took a lot of thought is buying a new toothbrush. No, not a regular toothbrush but an electric one. I have been thinking about it for a while and I think I am ready to commit. I know I know that I want to live with as few things as possible in life. I still will need a toothbrush and if it’s better, why not? I anyway have bad teeth. If it helps, why not. The idea of going minimalist is to replace excess with few but with the few that works!

Ok, I have a new term that I can use. ‘The Chase of Few’. Wah!

What else?

Well, the list of things to do, the ode to “She” and more remain open. I add more tasks on Asana than I knock off from the list. So that.

Oh yeah. I finished the second season of Fauda. This one I played at 1.5x speed. Not kidding. It’s was an interesting experience. On one side, I spent 15-18 hours (24 episodes of 40 mins each) watching it. And on the other, I merely went through the motions of watching. There was no real watching I did there! Not cool at all.

Monday on, I am shunning Netflix, unless it’s directly related to something I am working on.

So that’s about it for the day. Need to pack a lot in the next few hours before I shut my phone. And with that, it’s an over an out for the day.

Here’s streaks.

  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 187
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 0
  • OMAD – 0
  • #noCoffee – 0
  • #noCoke – 99. I will have a few Diet Cokes tomorrow for sure.
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • Surya Namaskar – 0

100121 – Morning Pages

Today’s edition of morning pages is tad rushed. But I am glad I could still get it in. And write a few words for book2.

10:03

Morning. This one would be a short one. I have a few things to do and I woke up late. I need to be out of the house by 11:00. And that means I have about 30 minutes to get this done. Yeah yeah, I am to blame – waking up late and all. Let’s get going.

So the exuberance around the new year is now fading away. 10 days in the new year, I am now at a point where I am back to thinking about existential things (the last few days of December and the first few days of January were spent in that dreamy state where I imagine the bright possibilities that the future represents and how I’d get to that state). Now the reality has started to hit hard. Things are real, immediate, and scary.

I can talk more but lemme try and prioritize. I have limited time today. First-order is a freewriting paragraph for #book2. Here we go…

He woke up with what seemed like a hangover. The back of his head. was thumping like someone was playing drums up in there. It couldn’t be a hangover. He’s been sober now for almost 10 days, the longest he’s been. No, he didn’t plan for this. It just happened. How do you get liquor inside the confines of a jail? Hypothetically you could. There was always what Red called a Sears inside every jail. In America. In India. In Goa. And in every other place on the planet. He could get his Gin if he wanted to. He’s been around jails a long time. But he was hurt – physically and mentally. How could things go so wrong? They had everything planned. With the meticulousness that they were known for. Well, they weren’t really known – that’s why they could avoid getting caught for so long. But between the five of them, they always planned every scenario, including getting caught. And what had happened on that morning, they couldn’t have ever imagined. Or planned for. Even the failsafe they had that included all of them killing each other in case of adversity didn’t work. Well, it did. For Santosh at least. But not for Raunak. And in none of the scenarios they planned for, Raunak was getting caught. He was the linchpin of the gang and he was the only one that knew all that they’ve been up to over the last 3 decades. With him out of action, the gang was as good as non-existent.

Ok, enough. Just a short para. No time. But I am glad I got this para in.


The other thing that has started to happen lately is that I am getting way too many calls from way too many people interested in knowing about Bitcoin and crypto in general. While these have been around forever (since 2009 really), I think it’s time I jump into em with all I have. Lol, yet another thing that I want to work on. Mera kya hoga?

The other thing that I need to note is that I am struggling to stay off carbs. And I haven’t been able to add any workout, exercise to my routine. I don’t think I will ever be able to. How am I to then run that Marathon or climb that Everest? In fact, yesterday only I was finalizing my #in2021 goals and living long featured big in there. And I need to get going on it. I don’t know how to.

Its funny.

Really. On one side, I give gyaan to everyone about how to achieve their goals and climb their Everests. On the other, I am unable to get to my own. I am disciplined (for a large part), very stingy with my time (for a large part), cautious about what I spent my attention on (for a large part) and get things done (for a large part), and yet eating clean and working out is something that I cant seem to do. Take yesterday. I started with a lo-carb breakfast. But then was too stressed about the yearly goals and money in the bank and started popping Diet Cokes. And before I knew it, I had 7. Then, I had to meet Gaurav (he’s leaving today). He called me to a bakery and I just couldn’t avoid the temptation of having some chocolate croissants Pain Au Chocolat. Which, if you ask me is the best damn thing ever invented in terms of food. Just the act of writing about it is making me salivate and think of the time spent at LPQ at Powai, which to me was the best damn place in the whole wide world. Too bad it shut. Someday I’d love to bring it back. Fuck I have way too many things that I have planned for someday.

I digressed.

The point is, while all other things (work, money, relationships, etc) will figure out by themselves, I think the fitness piece is what I need help on. What can I do? What is the way out? Maybe pickup some sport?

Anyone?

070121 – Morning Pages

I talk about life at a hotel, things I want to do in life and living in Goa.

Hello hello!

Quite a few things on my mind. I will talk about each of those and this post would thus become a list of haphazard thoughts without a connecting theme or idea per se. So, will divide into sections.

Wait. Is this what Morning Pages supposed to be? This is becoming a journal and a very public one at that (which is ok, I am not worried about having my thoughts out there in the open – I like the idea of Living in Public). I need to nudge towards deep reflections, ideas, lessons et al. Not rants. Maybe in a few days I would reach there.

Anyhow. Post for the day.

So yesterday was probably the worst day of 2021 – physically, mentally, emotionally, and in every other lly that you may imagine. I had way too many carbs (I had Biryani, Rissotto, Pizza, Cookies and I don’t know what else). I had like 5 cans of Diet Coke. So much so that the gums are swollen. I spent more money yesterday than I have spent in a day in months. On a hunch, I stood on a weighing machine in a hotel room. I am disappointed that I am still 85+ KGs despite eating clean(er) for more than a month and hoping in my head that I am eating clean. Someone I trust more than my life fucked me over. For a simple thing. And they were unapologetic about it. I am running behind schedule on each project that I have undertaken. I know I lag at times, the curse of doing so many things but this time I am really behind projects. To a point that I need a month to cover the backlog! Of course, I have a lot to blame. Starting with myself. Internet second. I mean I did not even write yesterday’s morning pages as the first thing. I wrote it around 11. Then throughout the day, I had this headache that literally killed me. I wanted to kill myself. I know why patients that have terminal pain want to move on. I had to alternate between catnaps, food, and coffee to even breathe. I am ok right now. I don’t know what caused it to be honest. Plus I had a million calls on top of that that I could not avoid. And I dont really crib about health when am on work calls – so I had to fake and I tried hard. I am sure they would have seen that I was slacking. Arrrghh.

Ok. Enough.

Let’s talk of good things now. So Nikhil is here for a recce. And he invited me to stay with him and talk shop. As I write this, I am sitting at a comfortable cafe on the beachside to the following view…

So this bit is nice. I like the idea of comfortable seating while I work. And with some sort of open expanse around me. Like this one.

No, I am not helping him with his work even though I am itching to. The event is his baby and my unsolicited opinions may not be welcome. I miss the time when I would do such large events and talk to multiple people and control the show. I miss Dipanker by my side in the hotel room and on the console. I miss yelling at Paras to get his ass moving. Sigh. Kya din they. I think I may become whatever – marketer, podcaster, writer, investor, publisher – my heart would always be in an event. Or as Shikha as increasingly made me realize, on a film set. I like the organized chaos, the uncertainty, the rush. May be I need to deliver my dent in the world via other people while I am shouting orders around an event? Fuck! Writing this is making me happy and nice in the head. How would it be to actually do something like that again!

Lets see when that happens.

Come on, Universe!

In fact, I think I miss the feeling of being in hotels. Even though hotels are the most impersonal, fake, and obnoxious places in the world, I like the idea of hotels. To a point that I want to live in forever. I anyway have sort of made my mind about letting go of everything I own (including the guitar and the books – two of the most prized possessions that I have. I am still undecided about all the notes that I have made. May be I can digitize those?). I can totally live out of a suitcase for the rest of my life.

So yeah, hotels.

As I type this, the screen of my MacBook Air literally fell off on me. The machine is now almost 5 years now and I need to get a new one. The thing with Goa is that the one I want to buy (M1 Air) is not available here. Plus even if it were to buy, I want to buy it only from a Croma (I have some points that I want to use, you see). I have to get a new one. Before this one conks off on me and I am left without an option! Maybe I’ll make a trip to Mumbai? Spend 10-12K on travel to save 50K odd that I would if I bought from Croma? It’s funny the kind of decisions I am left to make 😀

Talking of decisions, I have now been in Goa for more than a month now. I need to start thinking about work and come to a decision. I have two thought starters. Here are they…

A. I need to have the capital to survive (and invest in all the ideas that I am putting money behind) till this patch is around. Can I make that from Goa? As of today, looks tough. Can I make it from Goa in the long run? Definitely yes. How do I navigate this short-term to long-term? I don’t know yet.

B. I need to make an impact at a large scale. Wherever I am in life, I don’t see that happening. I don’t know what to do about it. I know I can say that I am taking a break (induced by COVID) but then age does not take a break.

So yeah. This is more of a dialogue with self as of now. At some point, it will crystalize into something concrete. Let’s see when.

The last thing for the day.

The day before I decided that on each morning page, I would write a para from #book2. These paras may or may not make it to the final edit but I would write. But I would at least get in the habit of writing (and thus thinking – I think by writing). I haven’t been able to do so. Maybe will start from today (not right now, later in the day, can edit the post or make another one once I have delivered things that I need to work on). There’s just too much hangover of shit that happened yesterday. Hope today is better. For me. For you. For the rest of the world.

See you guys tom!