Full Circle ...

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

.... :-P

The Art of Running ...

Monday, June 27, 2005
Running, to put it mildly, is one most aerobic and invigorating activity. With your heart and lungs pounding; Your body in such free streamlined flow; Your arms and legs swinging in instinctive rhythm; And your breath, an exhilarating magic.

So what do I feel when I get out to run in the morning ? I feel light. My feet feel light, joyous, delightful, inside my running shoes. And I tend to bump off the ground each time I lift my step.

Yes, the place where you are gonna run indeed has a bearing on how you would feel. Not in a stuffy, open room with glasses all around and on a tread-mill. Not on the pavement of a buzzing road full of dragging machines coughing smoke. Yeah, the chances of you feeling delightful rather than like toiling in the sake of a commitment is tough on those aforesaid terrains. But surely, in a lovely park with it's sky covered by trees and foliage, yeah.

So you start gently, you walk around the park. And of course, you don't choose the paved walkway to run, hard surface running can damage your tendons. You walk around the park, hearing the wind tickling the tops of a bamboo bush, seeing two squirrels running about; one after the other in a serpenting spiral up a tall tree, and listening to the lone cuckoo. I wonder how it manages to sound so happy when I'm almost sure that it's a lone cuckoo.

And then you run gently, at first taking a little effort to make sure that you indeed are in rhythm, and not just throwing your arms and legs about. Your heels taking the impact when your feet hit the ground and your toes pushing you off the ground when you thrust forward. And your arms swinging in harmony with your legs. After a few minutes you can take your attention off the rhythm; it maintains itself. And you can now look amused at a few sorry looking folks trying to chug on alongside; mostly obliging to stern medical recommendations, of course. And maybe feel smiling at the other few, who are actually enjoying what they are doing, few, but indeed there is beauty in this world. And admire the other few, who are, yeah, toiling for the sake of commitment.

And you run, round after round, you start to sweat, your lungs begin to ache sweetly, and your breath starts striding, on to the magical parts of the spectrum. You lift your gaze up, and drink the sun rays drizzling through the green sieve above.

You jump at random and aim your head at a few hanging bunch of leaves. A moment of flight; and when your feet touches the ground, they are reminded with slight reproach that they are not inside an Ipump by Reebok.

And as you turn the corner and glide into a straight patch, with a little practice you can visualize the scene flying past you as visuals sent back by an on-board camera from a Formula One racing car, just above the driver's head. You can later morph it into what is seen by a running gazelle; The world flowing past its field of vision, undulating, and blurry.

And you stop gently, gently, slowing down, descending into a walk, and walking, walking as your heart is still pounding, your breath still slightly lagging behind but following, and your lungs relenting, slowly, your body beats mellowing, calming down. Now you can breathe in deeply, and smile.

Powerhouse ...

Sunday, June 26, 2005

This in tribute to the story 'Powerhouse' from 'The Golden Apples of the Sun' by Ray Bradbury.

Obligatory excerpt :

She traced the half-seen tubing up and up into the ceiling, and she saw the machines and heard the invisible whirlings. She suddenly became very alert in her drowsiness. Her eyes moved swiftly up and up and then down and across, and the humming-singing of the machines grew louder and louder, and her eyes moved, and her body relaxed, and on the tall, green windows she saw the shadows of the high tension wires rushing off into the raining night.

Now the humming was in her, her eyes jerked, she felt herself yanked violently upright. She felt seized by a whirling dynamo, around, around in a whirl, out, out, into the heart of whirling invisibilities, fed into, accepted by a thousand copper wires, and shot, in an instant, over the earth!

She was everywhere at once!

Streaking along high monster towers in instants, sizzling between high poles where small glass knobs sat like crystal-green birds holding the wires in their nonconductive breaks, branching in four directions, eight secondary directions, finding towns, hamlets, cities, racing on to farms, ranches, haciendas, she descended gently like a widely filamented spider web upon a thousand square miles of desert!

The earth was suddenly more than many separate things, more than houses, rocks, concrete roads, a horse here or there, a human in a shallow, boulder-topped grave, a prickling of cactus, a town invested with its own light surrounded by night, a million apart things. Suddenly it all had one pattern encompassed and held by the pulsing electric web.

She spilled out swiftly into rooms where life was rising from a slap on a naked child's back, into rooms where life was leaving bodies like light fading from an electric bulb - the filament glowing, fading, finally colorless. She was in every town, every room, making light patterns over hundreds of miles of land; seeing, hearing everything, not alone any more, but one of thousands of people, each with his ideas and his faiths.

Her body lay, a lifeless reed, pale and trembling. Her mind, in all its electric tensity, was flung about in this way, that, down vast networks of powerhouse tributary.

Gaudy Butterfly ....

Thursday, June 16, 2005

"Bees sip honey from the flower and hum their thanks when they leave.
The gaudy butterfly is sure that the flower owes thanks to her."

-- Stray Birds, Rabindranath Tagore.


Perpetual Construction ...

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

From a visit to the Export Promotion Tech Park in Whitefield.

All around that place, almost wherever you look, its full of buildings under construction. Office complexes, Apartments, Trade centers and all. Full of huge half-finished concrete structures with protruding steel skeletons and little men moving about them in yellow helmets.

I remember reading somewhere, of someone sitting on his rooftop in a distant suburb of Boston and looking at the dusty sky above Boston far away. Dust rising from the perpetual construction of Boston, like a distant herd of buffalo charging in the planes.

And whenever I see huge structures being constructed, the first thing that comes to my mind is Howard Roark, and The Fountainhead.

Good day to me ... :-)

Sunday, June 12, 2005
Talk about a good day ! This Saturday was one. From morning till the last minutes of midnight ... :-)

When I woke up at 7.30, from a much deep slumber, like waking after months long hibernation, a soft yellow morning sun was seeping through my glazed window pane; playing on my sheets, at times bright, then dimming, then bright again, making me smile, and telling me that it's gonna be a day of billowing white clouds.

And I just realize that I had a lot, a huge lot, of dreams last night. Sort of how you make out that a painter has been working furiously; seeing the color spills, the soaked cotton waste and bits of torn paper. But am not able to recollect much, save for two or three great knights hacking at a huge pillar with their swords, songs being played in I-TV in strange and unknown languages, a group of people in search for a guy called Sumandra Ravindran, and a large procession of millions of people and a deep drumming voice rattling over them. Gee ... :-) ... just to know that you had so many dreams, even without being able to remember, makes one so happy.

And then I made it to my morning run at the park. Sometimes I feel its becoming like and addiction, but I'd count it a good one if it is ... :-) ... I like how my feet feel inside the running shoes, all jumpy and high spirited delight and raring to go. And the park was great, with the lazy morning still trapped in it's tree tops and it's sky covered with trees and green foliage that you can run there and treat your lungs to cool moist air even at 9.00 in the morning. And I have just fallen in love with the cuckoo there, always taunting me to answer its call, taking it to higher and higher pitches as if to tease me.

Then my bike had to be serviced. After all the daredevil-ery she had to act out to save me from knee deep water logged roads on the night when the rain Gods decided to lash out at the City. She seemed to have caught a cold, and her brakes were locking, and her tyres wobbling. She's too tyred ... :-D ... Did I tell you that she's a black Kinetic and that I love her?

And breakfast was great ... :-) ... I think 'Adicha Chaya' is to me like Tequila is to the Mexicans, Green Tea to the Chinese, and Beer to the Australians. Its a heavenly potion to have in the morning, with its white froth floating on top and the hot, punching, Getafix mix underneath. Until I set foot in Karnataka I didn't know that it too can be made to an ugly, brutal, log headed mockery. Sad that I have to travel a bit to enjoy it, from the place where I stay, and a bike to be serviced is just a perfect excuse.

Back at home, now that my Bike was away, I decided to try-ride a blue Pulsar left at my place who actually belongs to a friend who has gone abroad and practically settled there. She was dusty, so I gave her a scrub and she gleamed. She has gears .. |-) ... but, she's a great ride. She's 150 Cc and 12 bhp. And when riding her you can almost feel her raw power fidgeting under your arms. And she just takes you to air and punches your head if you let her go. She's someone who for sure likes to be on top ... :-), and taming her is a thrill ride. Now I don't want to be caught between this tussle of two mistresses, but I think my black pearl is becoming a lil old ... hee ... :-D

And lunch was a blast, owing to the sudden decision by three of us to go to Chung's. Its an Indianised Chinese restaurant, where everything is fiery, not to mention ones with the thumbnail of a chilly by their side on the menu. And I dig the Malaysian noodles, Koi Thai, a flat and slender one that tastes really good. And and assortment of fiery fried chicken along with it. Out from there and a succulent, thick Mango juice from Sree Ganesha's to put me straight into sleep again ... :">

And I wake up at dusk ... browse through the TV and sample a few of the movies playing, some hilarious ones are on today, and settle for a far second rated Kannada Chaya on account of laziness. No rain today, just white billowing clouds. Night fell slowly, and I walked under the yellow-orange Sodium vapor lamps. They create an out of the world enigma on deserted silent roads coupled with the silent hum of an occasional fluorescent lamp and stage the perfect setting to discuss philosophy if you are in the company of one so aligned, and nostalgia if thats the pick rather, or fast cars, or mountain peaks, or kangaroos, or love, or life the Universe and everything, as you like it.

It feels nice to see Sirius shining brightly in the sky after a long stint of cloudy days.

And I went and got my black pearl back. And surpassing all my expectations, she's all chick again and rides like a dream ! Oh Boy ! :-D

And I visit a couple of friends, and see how the blue gal rides in the night. Well, she's spectacular! ... :-D

Those guys already had their dinner and hence they route me to a Dhaaba that they had tried.

The Bobby Dhaaba. All Punjabi, all orginal, and all Dhaaba ! Ki Oye ! With this tall Jatt in his long Kurtha and the small round bulbous headgear shouting all the while in starkly accented voice.

"Ji order dena Sirji Mah'raj ! ... Yaar' Oye' tabel' numbr' chaar khaali!! saf kar fatafat' "

"Ki Sirji, Do alu ke paratteh' ek' rajma, ek' dahi aur ek' mattah' ! tabel' numbr chaar pe baittiye ji ! "

Shouting is his primary apparatus of communication to the ones in the kitchen as well on the Dhaaba floor. I'm gonna like this place ... :-)

So I indulge myself in "Do alu ke paratteh' ek' rajma ek' dahi aur ek' mattah'" and reach Almosto Blastosis. Gee ... :-)

And coming back, settle down heavily in front on the TV to watch the Formula One Canadian Grand Prix qualifying. And hee .. :-) ... The Red Car comes second on the first row. And no sign of the black one anywhere nearby ... B-) I don't know why I like the Red Car, somehow I got attracted to it long back. I like Red.

And its 12.00 Midnight. Boy! You should go to sleep. Now!

And today I bought a Rubix cube on roadside for 30 bucks, as all my previous ones have been stolen by lilliputians.

Life on a Cedar ....

Saturday, June 11, 2005

From my Himalayan winter trek in December'04.

A creeper trying to climb on to a towering Cedar that is more than a hundred feet tall.

Life, the phenomenon, as it has evolved through the millions of years on this planet, is an astonishingly robust thing. It thrives in the most impossible environments, it propels itself through the hardest of obstacles, and just refuses to go down. It survives; Miles deep under the sea, in ecosystems that thrive on hot magma springs as their sole energy source. Miles above sea level, on snow covered mountains, in organisms that don't need oxygen to survive. In birds, leopards, buffaloes, great sharks, salmons, bulldogs, squirrels, sparrows, cockroaches and mosquitoes.

And in the poorest of people barely surviving in slums, who really don't seem to have much reason to do so.

What is the most characteristic feature of life?

Is it that it survives, reproduces and spreads itself?

Digital Life ...

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Hope she falls through irradicating tubes that detox her and deneuralizing vortexes that unpluck the menacing tentacles from her back, sparkling mazes of crystal that bring back the glitter into her eyes, dove feathers that wipe her tears and caress her mind, billowing clouds that float her on her feet, fading mist to wake her up from sleep and a brilliant sun to daze her ... and a twin rainbow colored dodecohedron for her to play with .....