Shackman and I exchanged views on my post on Accidental Connections. I think that the question and response opens up a very profound thought process calling for introspection.

Shackman: “You are a regular social butterfly, my friend.”

I: “Sometimes I wonder if I am the butterfly or the flower on which butterflies land!”

While mulling over the matter, I remembered another great saying.  Let me simply add that I am happy.  I shall now leave the matter in the very capable hands of Shackman and look forward to his comments.


Top Five Regrets.

A fellow alumnus from my Business School, about the same age as I am now, sent this ezine article to all his classmates via our Alumni Group Mail. Some of my classmates have already departed this world, and some of us have had close calls, all well before receiving this group mail. None of us are getting any younger and so this kind of group mail is not something out of the ordinary.

I was intrigued enough to reflect on the five regrets that the author writes about and felt that I should share my conclusions with my readers. Perhaps it will inspire them also to reflect on them.

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

I honestly believe that I have lived a life true to myself, as I am sure that all of us have. There have been occasions when I regretted some aspects of it, but overall, I have not lived the life that others expected of me, for the better or for the worse.

2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.

I hardly worked. Where is the question of working so hard?

3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

I consider this to be a major weakness in me. I simply cannot keep my feelings to myself. I express them, often, much to the discomfort of hapless listeners/readers.

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

This post is proof enough that I am in touch with my friends. Besides fellow alumni, there are many other friends with who, I have never lost touch since boyhood and youth. I have also continued making new friends on and offline, as life unfolds and some of the relationships are flourishing and promise to be lifelong ones.

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

If I get any happier, some other palliative care giver will soon write another ezine article like this about the freak that s/he came across in her/his experience.

Doing Without.

To be without some of the things you want is an indispensable part of happiness.

-Bertrand Russell.

In response to my mail about my inability to do something that I wish I could do for a friend and my unhappiness with it, my friend sent me this quote! He of course meant well and this was his way of his saying that he understands my inability.

Since I received it a few days ago, I have tried to understand the quote but have not. At least not yet.

How can anything that I want, but cannot get, be part of my happiness?

Can my readers throw some light on this?


I received this mail from a ‘well wisher’ who thinks that I should live happily ever after!

Equations!- This is the best I have read in a LONG time

Equation 1
Human = eat + sleep + work + enjoy
Donkey= eat + sleep
Human = Donkey + Work + enjoy
Human-enjoy = Donkey + Work

In other words,

A Human that doesn’t know how to enjoy = Donkey that works.

+++++++++++++++++++++ +++++++++ +++++++++ +++++++++ ++

Equation 2

Man = eat + sleep + earn money
Donkey= eat + sleep

Man = Donkey + earn money

Man-earn money = Donkey

In other words
Man who doesn’t earn money = Donkey

++++++++++++ +++++++++ +++++++++ +++++++++ +++++++++

Equation 3

Woman= eat + sleep + spend
Donkey= eat + sleep

Woman = Donkey + spend
Woman – spend = Donkey

In other words, Woman who doesn’t spend = Donkey

++++++++++++ +++++++++ +++++++++ +++++++++ +++++++++

To Conclude: From Equation 2 and Equation 3

Man who doesn’t earn money = Woman who doesn’t spend

So Man earns money not to let woman become a donkey!

And a woman spends not to let the man become a donkey!

So, We have: Man + Woman = Donkey + earn money + Donkey + Spend money

from postulates 1 and 2, we can conclude

Man + Woman = 2 Donkeys that live happily together!



Small Joys Of Life.

“Many people lose small joys, in hope for the big happiness.”
– Pearl S Buck.

My friend Sandeep is currently away from Pune at Canada and is about to leave for the Middle East on assignment. He has posted a blog about what has happened in his terrace garden in his blog with a photograph that captures the essence of the garden. Please do visit.

When I read that post, I could not help thinking about my own little patch of green where sparrows have nested and are quite friendly with us. I have left a comment to that effect in Sandeep’s blog and would rather not repeat it here.

The point is that, this post and my spontaneous comment brought to my attention that it is the small joys of life that seem to occupy me rather than any big earth shaking happinesses. A series of such small joys including a instant messaging chat with Sandeep, Sundar, sitting in the verandah and watching the birds and flowers, drinking a cup of hot tea while it is raining, enjoying a bit of golden oldies music on the satellite radio and the list is endless.

I am quite comfortable in such pursuits and do not particularly miss going out and ‘doing’ things. A couple of my friends however think that either I am bonkers or am reaching for a spiritual high! In either case, I am considered to be just an oddity among a whole lot of people of around my age, who seem to think that motion is joy.

I do not mind being thought of as such. I do however mind when someone takes it up on himself or herself to change things and try and persuade me to join in some escapade or the other. I have now a great excuse of my father living with me and so use that an excuse not to join in. I think that it is frivolous and not necessary to be forever in motion to enjoy life.

Perhaps it is just senility creeping in. What do you think?


I was asked by a friend of mine to locate some quotations on happiness, that she could use for a lecture that she was giving to her class mates in a cookery class.

As usual, I was flippant and asked her whether the quotations should be on happiness directly related to food and cooking it or eating it. She was offended and suggested that I join her class too, to see what kind of people come there, and what things other than cooking get discussed there. On probing, I found that the cooking class was more of an excuse to provide a forum where some people could come together and spend some time and learn a few things about anything. More time was spent on matters other than learning to cook! Some kind of an informal social club.

Being the blogger that I am, I suggested that she should talk something about social network sites in her lecture. She agreed to and said that she would indeed include it as a source that apparently makes a lot of people very happy.

Any way, after much search, I provided three quotations for her, which are given below. She was quite satisfied with the choice.

“Happiness is a butterfly, which, when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which, if you will set down quietly, may alight upon you.” Nathaniel Hawthorne

“All men seek happiness. They do not know exactly what is meant by happiness, but they desire it just the same.” James T. Mangan.

“If there were in the world today any large number of people who desired their own happiness more than they desired the unhappiness of others, we would have paradise in a few years.” Bertrand Russell

Just before she left, she asked me to give her my own definition of happiness. I said “Not being unhappy”. She laughed and bid me good day and left.

What is your favourite definition, or have you coined your own?