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:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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!”
- 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.
- Blood Diamond: After watching this movie you will not have as favorable an opinion about wearing diamonds as you may have now.
- 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