Thursday, 4 August 2016

On Idling Around

Why, oh why is it that I'm wasting the present moment? From where has this nature to idle around come from?

Although to be really fair, I've been idling along a lot since childhood. And I know I'm being really fair since I'm writing this from a geographic coordinate and altitude that's exactly where I idled around a lot in my early childhood (subtracting any tectonic plate shifts of course). I'm talking about my native home in Kerala, in my bedroom, from where the sights of coconut, banana and papaya trees full of papayas hasn't changed one bit. What has however changed is the fact that I now have access to a fast internet connection.

What's also changed is that I'm now educated enough to use this internet to gather data, research papers and potentially* do world-changing work. Except that my mind has not warped itself to this new reality and instead prefers to take comfort in the soft warm bed and blankets, watch the monsoon drops hit the mud-tiled roof as the monsoon clouds make it dark, turning the green surroundings into a shade of dark green.

The heavy rains also flood into me countless childhood memories – that of cricket with cousins, collecting mangoes from the nearby tree, make a hole in them as we'd squeeze the pulpy and sweet juice into our mouths, as our cuffs become stained in yellow. So intoxicating it is that even this article, which was to originally serve as a dreary-dry reminder that I have to work, is taking a more poetic tone.

But then if I'm to be really fair again, there's also beauty in exploring new problems and cracking them. Albeit a beauty that's more subtle and harder to obtain. She expects you to pursue her relentlessly while herself showing not the slightest interest. She's hard to flatter and turns down all attempts at gaining her hand. Although internally, she enjoys these nerdy (unlike most other girls) suitors spending hours to please her and can't help herself from giving a faint smile, a slight blush now and then. This sometimes catches the eye of the suitor who's overjoyed, starts pursuing with the fullest might and not before long, inexplicable beauty is within reach!

What's absolutely essential to appreciate this subtle beauty is to turn one's head away from the mundane to the magical. To turn away from the various BuzzFeeds of the internet and instead surround oneself with activities involving mental effort, so that some learning happens in the perceptrons within! In essence, it's time I realize that unlike in my childhood, I stand to lose something if I idle around – the more long-lasting joy of cracking problems! This childhood artefact will have to be cleared out to have any hope of gaining her hand!

*the word potentially is among the most abused words in English

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