140421 – Morning Pages

A ranty post on the mindfuckery imposed by the lockdown. In case you read, please excuse the expletives.

7:02 AM. Andheri.
Been up for a few minutes. Had a fitful sleep. Guess it’s all the food that I’ve had yesterday. 4 full meals! Will try to fast today. Let’s see.

So they announced the curfew in the whole of Maharashtra. Plus no deliveries after 8 PM. So basically, I am fucked. I can hit the road today but I don’t know where to go. Goa is an option but the cases there are on a different trajectory. Plus irrespective of what people say, it’s impossible to get things done there (no phone / internet). Also, I am thinking if I have to get affected by COVID (of course I will try hard to not get the virus), I want to be at a place that has better medical facilities and I have a better shot at not dying! From what friends tell me, the scene in Goa is scarier than what it is at other places (cases, medical staff, general carefulness of people, etc). So that.

One thing is for sure. If I am stuck for these 15 days in Mumbai, at this place, I will have to find something that allows me to stay sane. I don’t know what that could be. Meditation? Some sort of home workout (this place does not have enough to spread a yoga mat – not sure how would the workout happen)? Keto? Ideas anyone?

The other thing I am worried about is all the time I would waste cleaning the house. I know I am not cooking but the metro construction across the road spews a lot of dust and particle material in my house. There’s a thin layer on top of literally everything. I will be forced to put in a lot of time just with dusting.

Sigh.
The fuck is happening.
And yes, I am one of those people in the favour of the lockdown. But not in the favour of not allowing me to walk on the road. Damn this powerlessness sucks.

Ok. Deep breath. Deep breath. I will find a way. And too dark. Wont delete.

First things first. I will restart meditation from today. I will restart OMAD. I will be religious about these things. Meditation right after I wake up, once I have opened the windows and all. I will sleep by 10, come what may. I will try and wake up at 5. 7 hours of sleep is good for me.

Lol. I sound like a desperate man.
Lemme change tracks. Lemme talk of three things that I am grateful for.

A. I walked 10K steps yesterday. I could’ve walked more. But I just took a rick and came back home. I did 15K the day before. Today, I will get about 20K for sure. Before the lockdown shit at 8 PM.

Walking is not important but what I do while I am walking is. I spoke to a couple of friends and helped them with what they are thinking about – one wanting tips on marketing. Another wanted inputs on how to do better.

Grateful that people seek my counsel.

B. I have money in the bank for the first time since mid-2019. I mean I still have a big debt that I need to repay but I am finally not worried where would I get the rent from. Or where would I get the money required for paying my people. Even though the cards are still maxed and I am merely rolling them over, I know that I have enough inflow to roll those over.

I am grateful for these opportunities that have come my way; that, in turn, has allowed me to get to this stability. This feeling is very very liberating. To a point that I am probably sleeping better.

I just need to augment this.

C. For all the cribbing and ranting and hate that I have for this house that I live in, I am sincerely grateful that I have a roof over my head. I may have complaints about the lack of space, I am grateful that I don’t have to share this with anyone. I may not be able to remove all the furniture, I am grateful that I have found some space to put my writing table and work on that.

So that’s that.

What else? Yeah! I am going to get started on Diet Coke. I havent had it more than 30 days. It’s time I get back to it. For a month or so. And then I will quit again. Help me decide?

Help me decide!

So yeah, this is it. No book2 today. I have a lot of work. To end the post, here’s streaks…

  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 122
  • #aPicADay – 103
  • 10K steps a day –2
  • OMAD – 0
  • #noCoffee – 35
  • #noCoke – 35
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0

Day 6. 161220

On day 6 of my daily morning pages, I write about how poker could be a career for me. And how it may not be! And ofcourse I rant a bit!

16th December. More than half of December is gone. Also, 10 days since I’ve moved to Goa. Probably the longest I have been away from Delhi or Mumbai without any work / agenda. I do have a sense of how this is going (not good, to save you suspense) and I do know how to fix this (get a better Internet connection, fix a schedule, a public space that has 24×7 access, etc) and I will if I know that this is where my base is going to be. PS: I miss this 24X7 bit more than I miss anything else in the world, btw.

But as I write this, at 6:23 AM in the morning and funnily, work and base are not the first things on my mind. I am increasingly thinking about ideas and I am itching to start executing one. I wish I was paid to think of ideas.

I think it’s an outcome of people finding out that am in Goa and then assuming that I am working on my next book (which is based in Goa) and asking me the same question. In fact, at least three people asked me about the book just yesterday (Daku, Kamat, and Aka). High time I get going. If only I can find the time. I think I will have to make time (and not find the time), if I need to get the book out.

Like I said, I don’t have thoughts about any one particular project but about something. Something that I can do and kickstart. It’s been a few months since I did something new. I guess this is what happens when you get bored and the ennui induced by the day to day living makes you restless.

So yeah. That. Apart from this, I don’t know what to write. The heads got a million thoughts but I don’t know what to write. I want to quit this post here but JC says you need to write three pages (or 30 minutes in my world), I will write till it’s 7 AM.

Let’s see what’s been clouding my head. I have to deliver a few presentations today. Each will take me 2-3 hours to deliver. So that. I need to finish editing a book. That will take a few more hours. I may get to play poker in the evening. Not sure though. Poker needs at least 5 players and it’s often tough to find people that like that game like I do, even though I am lousy at it.

In fact, poker could be a thing that I can talk about. Poker is probably as perfect a game as they have invented. There is luck, there is skill. Even with lousy cards, with some skill (bluffing, reading people et al), you can do well. I think Poker could be my sustainable vocation. Just that the learning curve is steep and I need to put in some 10000 hours (or play a million hands) to build a mental repository. It is much like chess. You build a repository and you can play from experience. The difference is that chess is more or less a finite game where each move can eventually lead to a certain conclusion (and thus computers have beaten humans), poker is not.

Poker requires patience. It requires a bankroll (that you can build up with time. Random trivia – I have a record of more or less every poker game I have played since 2012 and numbers tell me that I not a good player).

Poker is excitement. The adrenaline that you get after you win a tough hand? Wow. The validation of getting out of a tough spot? That. The feeling of achievement after you have won? Yes! Tangible results? Of course!

It has everything that I want.

Sense of achievement. After all the results are tangible. With books, films, they are not. You are left guessing about what you’ve written.

Ability to travel the world (COVID-19 withstanding). There are probably as many casinos as there are rich, touristy destinations.

Opportunity to meet interesting people (most poker players have interesting lives, the kinds that make interesting stories).

Better with age. Rather than sports like Tennis and Chess, you get better with time (till a point, of course).

There are a few things missing as well. Here’s a list.

No impact. Even if I become a Kid Poker, I wouldn’t be able to make an impact. May be I will if I go the Chamath or Jason way.

No scale. It’s a solitary game. How do I create a community? How do I do things at scale?

No physical effort. Apart from being able to sit at the chair for long.

I am sure there are more things that I can write on both how poker has everything I want and what is missing. But the point is, it sounds like a thing that I could easily do for a living! Just that I need to make a commitment and then not move from it for 3 years.

Wish I had the means to do so! Damn them means. Have chased means all my life and I am losing the race and I can see that. And I can’t find a way out. If not for friends and family, I wouldn’t know what to do. This Goa trip has been made possible only because Rajesh was kind to give me his house. Nupura was kind to chaperone me. My parents were kind to not frown on my decision to stay away. My sis was kind to fund the last few months (and probably a few more). If not for all this kindness, I wouldn’t know where I’d be.

So yeah. That.

Oh, the thing for the day? Rather than lamenting about lack of means, I am grateful for the abundance of this kindness. Lol, I sound like a Buddhist monk but heck yeah! That’s how it is! That’s that! I am grateful that I can make my fingers dance on this keyboard and express myself. To the void. Or to the world at large. Or may be, to myself!

With this, over and out!