Tag Archives: Reading

When I Look Back

Hurray, I’m alive! Tonight (it’s the 31st of December, here in India) will mark the end of 2013. I have lived through the year, and you, my dear friend, who are reading this, are also alive. Isn’t this a matter to be happy about?  Looking back I see that I have not been able to do a few things as I planned. Many a things do not work out as per our plans. Everyone I have known or I came across to – friends, foes, chance acquaintances and all – have played a big part in my life. I could have never known how intricate life is hadn’t I had the privilege to know those I have known. It is true that not all of them were nice to me. But good and bad are part of our experiences. I say, it is good to experience everything, and learn (or teach) from the experiences.

I have realized this year that there is no point trying to fit in among your peers. You will try, you will be shoved, trampled, and you might feel like a fish out of water. If you are meant to stand out, why fit in, sir?

From my experiences, and from my understating of human behavior, I would like to give some advice to my readers (yes, I dare to):

  • Don’t rely on others, do something yourself.
  • Beware of the promises people make; not everyone keeps their promises. If you are a man of your words avoid those who are not.
  • Be smart. Not rich, not famous, but smart. Being smart pays off.
  • Fall in love, but do take care of your heart because it will be broken innumerable times.
  • Have confidence in yourself. Don’t let others say what you should do and what you should not.
  • Avoid those who bitch about you. They may be good to you in your presence, but just the moment you turn back, they become a different personality altogether. You have to be careful, my friend.
  • Always help others and do good. I’m not saying that by doing so you will go to heaven, I know not where heaven is, but you will surely feel good about yourself.

Among my many resolutions at the beginning of this year one was reading a certain number of books. I have read a lot of them but not as many as I intended to. If you ask me why, I may offer you more than one thousand reasons. Save your energy by not asking; I’ll save mine by not answering.

Here are the five books I loved this year, and I will read them one more time, if time allows, many more time. These books were not published this year, but I read them this year. Here goes:

  1. How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie: This is one gem of a book, a self-help book. The author has done his job, and he has done a brilliant job. Now it’s upon the reader how they intend to get helped by reading this.
  2. Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy: I don’t like any other writer’s work as much as I like Mr Hardy’s work. He was an outstanding literary master. I love his writings.
  3. Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh: I found this quite an interesting novel. It took some time to finish reading it, but it was absolutely worth the read.
  4. Animal Farm by George Orwell: “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.” This is the last sentence from the novella Animal Farm. Here is another: “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”  Do these sentences sound satirical? Actually the novella is a satirical work.
  5. The Call of the Wild by Jack London: I didn’t realize that this novel was about the life of a dog called Buck – dogs are my favorite animal – otherwise I would have plunged into it long back. Anyway, I have done it now.

I watched quite a good number of movies this year, – but not particularly of this year – about 150 of them I would say. They were all very good. Here are four movies which I consider the best.

  1. Cast Away: My god, Tom Hanks’ expression of happiness, when he finally makes fire after a lot of trail in an abandoned place, is priceless.  “I did it,” he says to himself, and then he laughs and exclaims: “Fire! There you go! Light it up! Come on!” then he sings, kindling the fire a little more: “The time to hesitate is through… no time to wallow in the mire…” and the best of all is when he blissfully shouts: “Yes! Look what I have created!” then beating his chest triumphantly he continues, “I have made fire! I… have made fire!”
  2. The Bicycle Thief: This is an Italian movie. I had to rely on the subtitles (in English) to understand it. And as I understood it, I liked it very much.
  3. Blood Diamond: After watching this movie you will not have as favorable an opinion about wearing diamonds as you may have now.
  4. The Gods Must Be Crazy: I can assure you this: you will have a good time, and you may laugh out loud, watching this movie.

That’s all. This year ends, but life goes on. There is much to learn and much to do. A new beginning awaits us. Hope it will be to our taste.

Happy New Year to all.

Copyright © 2013 RAMU DAS


How do you waste your time?

Do you waste time?
Well, I’m not sure if you do or not, but I do. I really do. And how do I do it? Here is how:

I stretch out my hands and try to grab a book from my bookcase, but I keep pondering over which book should I pick: should it be a novel or any other book that I can read for pleasure, entertainment, and fun and so on? Or Should it be a book related to my curriculum that would help me during the exams?

Books (Photo credit: henry…)

When I finally decide to choose the best option, once again I get baffled with the different genres and the wide range of authors and their works available, they all seem worth reading (or is it tempting the better word?) and I keep changing hands with books this way. And, thinking this, I spend more time then I would have spent otherwise, and to be very honest, I end up reading nothing at all; eventually I blame myself for wasting my time doing nothing worthwhile. So, here I think the vast option is the main culprit that leads me to procrastinate.

When I start my computer and sit in front of it, I keep on shuffling files from one folder to the other. I try to read some Portable Document Format (PDF) files which I have downloaded (a lot of it) absolutely free of cost from the internet. Well, I’m not a very rich guy nor are my parents, that I can buy all the books I want to read, therefore, the free books from the internet serves a really good purpose for me, moreover, one can get access to those books which are no longer available in print or which has been banned considering it to be blasphemous or for any other reason, take the example of satanic verses, just type ‘satanic verses pdf’ on Google or any other search engine you prefer, and depending upon the speed of your internet it gets downloaded (in case you wish to download it). This is not something new; I know most people are already aware about it.

Portable Document Format
Portable Document Format (Photo credit: Garry Ing)

Now, this is not something bad that I do, but when I overdo it (as I do, most often) it becomes worse. I unnecessarily arrange the files according to the authors and genres on a daily basis. This is where the problem lies. I don’t really read anything for more than half-an-hour for my mind wishes to be somewhere else, and one more time, instead of doing something productive, I spend more time on Facebook, Google plus, checking e-mails, and so on and so forth. The time spent on such activities equals the time I spend while I sleep.

I keep moving from one end of my room to the other, absolutely unnecessarily. Not exactly knowing what I intend to do as If I allow deep thoughts to make room in my head. And, indeed, for a moment or two, some really enlightening thoughts come to my mind, but, alas, they vanish as soon as I grab a pen in my hand and try to put the thoughts on paper.
All right that’s about it, I can go on writing more about my weakness, however I don’t seem to remember more as of now, but, I’m really trying to be productive and trying to dedicate my time to something that really matters to me, more importantly because I came across a poem while teaching my neighbor’s kid who is in the fifth standard. The poem is really motivational as well as apt to my situation (I guess). It is called ‘One Thing at a time’ written by M.A. Stodart:

Work while you work,
Play while you play;
To be useful and happy,
That is the way

All that you do,
Do with your might;
Things done by halves
Are never done right

One thing at a time,
And that do well,
Is a very good rule,
As many can tell

Moments should never
Be trifled away;
So work while you work,
And play while you play.

Copyright © 2012 RAMU DAS