I have been telling myself since the last December that when January of 2019 comes (or when I go to January), I shall not think about what most men and women (I am not sure of other animals) would be thinking. And what would they be thinking? If I am not wrong in my thinking, I think they would be thinking about keeping some New Year’s resolution. Now, I was telling that to myself in December, and I have been reminding myself of that since the last four days, because I know from experience that most, if not all, of the resolutions are going to come to naught. Yet, now, my fingers are itching to write something, and my brain is telling me that that something has to be the New Year’s resolution. Well, then, I, because I am my brain and body, I must oblige.
This year I am going to write a great deal, but most of my writing would be out of public view, unless I wish to share. I will start writing my first book this year. I am not sure in which year I will finish writing it, because completing a book is a long process. But starting it is important. It is going to be a non-fiction work, though at first my intention was to write fiction (which, I suppose, can wait for a later time). I have too many interesting and painful and funny experiences to recount.
I will learn a new language. I wanted to learn two languages this year, but I want to be more realistic this time, and do what is, to the best of my ability, considering the available time and resources, more achievable. Bangla is my mother tongue but it does not seem to be so. This year I actually thought of making it seem so as well. However, there is another language which is known to majority of Indians and which I can speak but cannot write or read, and that would be the language I would focus on this year, because considering my present situation and place, and by looking at the growing mass of people who seem to know and talk a great deal in this language, I am sure I would be in trouble if I don’t go with the flow. Yes, I am talking about Hindi.
I will read at least 35 books (fiction and non-fiction) though my aim is to read 50. If I don’t reach the star, I will land on the moon.
A small device that fits in your pocket, seem to be consuming too much of my time, in fact, I would say, it is governing my life, and I must stop this from happening. Therefore, if you haven’t got what I mean, I am going to be smart and use my smartphone less often (or only when I have to).
I will learn to cook some new dishes.
I like to travel, but, this year, I suppose, I will focus on saving my money, and I would rather find out more about the places that is not too far from my dwelling.
I will match at least 200 movies and documentaries.
That’s all I can think of at this moment, and there are some more resolutions which are somewhat private in nature, which are best kept to oneself.
Whoever said that money can’t buy happiness (and that money is not everything) should have added, be that as it may, money can surely reduce sadness, money can help make friends, money can keep all kinds of relationships strong, can help buy you those delicious food that you desire, will make people look upon you with reverence, make you a role model (no matter you deserve to be one or not), can give you confidence, can make you feel secure, and money can do so much more. Now, then, would you say money is not important?
It is strange how people give lame excuses when they can’t directly deny you the moment you want to borrow some money. But the strangest of all is when your very near and dear ones (the ones you thought you could depend on), for whom you sacrifice everything, to whom you give your all, seem to maintain a distance from you when you are in need. On the one hand human kind is the embodiment of hope, love and care, but on the other hand we are selfish, ruthless, vainglorious.
To save embarrassments in life, to prevent depression from ruling your life (thereby ruining your life), you should – no, not just should, but you must – make yourself so strong, so capable that you need not ever depend on any one. But what happens when you have too much money? Should you cling on to your money for ever? It is indeed very difficult to part with one’s hard earned money. Not everyone would understand, but the earner of money knows that very well.
The main question that should concern you, however, is when someone’s whole world is crumbling down and they can’t do anything about it, will it be worthy of you to be like those heartless materialist who turn away from helping others? Would you also let others feel what you once felt the moment someone said no to you when you were in need? From your experience you know how much it breaks your heart to find none helping you, therefore, can the knowledge of that prompt you to help the needy as much as you can? You know you have two square meals a day, but there are people who can’t afford a single meal a day; they eat something light once in two days or maybe three days. You might ask ‘Why don’t they work?’ Well, you know, if a skilled person is out of job most of the times, how is an uneducated, unskilled (some disabled) person supposed to get a job.
So, here comes your money. Money can help you help others. Money can open new avenues and empower people to do their best, to see the brighter side of life. Money is, therefore, important. And whoever say money can’t give you happiness, that money is not important, ask them very gently to just go to hell!
At your tender age your parents and elders (who consider themselves grownups, and who rightly are) scream and shout at you for the tiniest of faults they find in you. They are at liberty to do so, and at times their screaming and shouting do make sense, however, at other times they simply don’t.
But most of the times, all they tend to do is nothing but exaggerate every little mistake you make, and at other times, they blame you for something that is not your fault at all, and as a consequence you, who are the victim, suffer the consequence, as victims always suffer consequences. You have the impulse to do something different, yet you hesitate to do any such thing, for you know you will be condemned for anything contrary to your elders wish. Their wishes are law for you. You learn to suppress your feelings, for if you do not you might as well be bulldozed by the ones capable of bulldozing you. You accept, though not at all inclined to accept, that the fault is yours.
Your parents send you to school, and then, as you grow older, seeing you willing to learn more, they send you to college, and in such a place your teachers not only teach you by sweet words, but also by screaming and shouting if need be. Question their methods and chances are you will be thrown out of the classroom.
You complain you don’t like the education system; you say you don’t want to learn like a parrot, but would prefer to think out of the box; you complain your betel-nut chewing lecturers are incompetent and that they don’t know or understand what they teach, and so on and so forth your complaints are never-ending, but to such complaints not a soul pays heed, because you complain to yourself, a monologue that is. You keep everything within you. You don’t want to be rusticated. Your parents are poor; they can’t afford to send to you to some Ivy League institutes. They are doing their best, they can’t do any better. Take it or leave it. Something is better than nothing, you take it.
Amidst the screaming and shouting you have now become an able-bodied young man. You think you need to earn money, you want to be independent and do something. You want your parents to be proud of you, you want to see them smiling. It is not just money that you care about, you want respect. Your parents have told you if you don’t study and do well in your exams you will not get a good job, or money, or respect. Your teachers have done their job and made you job-ready, they told you learn only to earn, but you didn’t quite agree, yet you agreed anyway.
Finally, you got a job. Though you didn’t get it easily, but your hardship is known only to you. Unknown phone numbers flash on your cell phone, the owners of such numbers claim to be your relatives, you don’t know if they really are, but not to be disrespectful you speak with them and be as polite as you can. They congratulate you for all your successes before finally coming to the point: they want money, and if possible accommodation with you in your flat, for they have made up their mind to move to the city where now you live. They fancied living in the city you live in, and doing things people in the city do, but due to the absence of a relative like yourself they had to put a halt to all their fancies. But, here you are, a messiah to your folk.
At office, your boss let you overwork, but pay nothing for the extra work done. Your boss is concerned about one thing and one thing only: revenue! That boss of yours is the most shrewd and selfish man you have ever come across. He is one brute of a man.
You slog and never raise your voice for things you don’t like, for such a rash act on your part will mean that you lose your job. You don’t want to lose this job. You need money for survival and, mind you, you have more mouth than one to feed. Jobs are not in plentiful in the market. No; you can’t risk losing your job. So you stay mum, and allow all your bosses, for you have more than one, to scream and shout at you for more numbers, for more revenue. Don’t achieve your targets (numbers) and your bosses, all of them, will bully you.
The job you do is not an easy job by any means. Job for a common man like you will never be easy; the easy jobs are reserved for different section of the society. Knowing the fact fully well you don’t grumble at the any of the inconveniences you face every day.
You are married. Your wife is beautiful. Yours was an arrange marriage, your parents fixed it for you; love marriage was not a kind of thing you ever succeeded at; don’t forget, every time you proposed to a girl, you always took no for an answer. You are such a man that no girl understood your feelings, or cared for you even a little. But, your beautiful wife cares for you and you are happy for the same, and you care for her. You truly love each other.
You fathered two children: Lion, you named your son, and Tigress, you called your daughter. Though, you could call them by different names, but being an animal lover you preferred the two names, at least you call them so at home. You do everything for Lion and Tigress, but as they grow in proportion of body, they taunt you for the lack of something or the other, and like the wild lion and tigress of the jungle they throw tantrums at you. You regret naming them Lion and Tigress.
You start aging. You have worked for 40 years. Your hair becomes partially grey, then white. You are not as agile as you were. You have put on weight; your children, when they pay you an occasional visit once a year or twice a year, complain that you are too healthy and you are slow and clumsy.
You want to enjoy retirement, alas, you being you can never enjoy; your life is meant for hurdles. Not a penny do your children give you; in your lifetime you never saved a penny, of course, circumstances never allowed you to save any. Your only saving grace is the money that comes from you pension fund.
Your wife left the world. Now, you wait; wait for perfect time to leave everything behind, escape the screaming and shouting, go away, far away from the maddening crowd. You want to fall asleep, not an ordinary sleep this time, but a sleep from which you never wish to awake.