By-Two Kaapi in an oilfield

The weblog of Abhilash Ravishankar, India.

Here I blog about my personal experiences [posting rarely]

At my tumblelog Intoxicated by possibility I blog about my opinions/likes/dislikes [posting heavily]


Six months ago, I'd said that somehow I knew something.
That was six months ago.
Times they are a' changin for sure.
So much has changed!

I was listening to 9412, my fav internet radio station, and I heard that voice again - the voice of KeysDan!!! Your buddy, your friend, your pal, KeysDan!!! That was my fav RJ at 9412. ANd that's how I remembered those days.

I was at RRI in those days. Listening to 9412 all day and night. Working late hours in the night. Making requests to KeysDan and jumping up in my lab whenever he said - "Ebhilash from Bangalore, India". Just 1 cuppa coffee a week. Then take a walk in the RRI campus, trying to get over a big loss, trying to break off from the agony. Make a phone call to Mom when I was desperate to talk to someone. Wade through B'lore sleeping at 11 in the night.

6 months. Some things remain the same, some don't.

I am at Genesis Microchip these days. Listen to 9412 all day and evening. Work till 8/9 in the night as there is nothing better to do back home. Have more than 2 cuppas a day! No more rings of smoke. No more agony. The phone is much more active. I still get worked up when things don't work. But these days, both waveforms and spreadsheets are alive on my desktop.

And yes, today I did make a request, and I did hear my song that pretty well describes how things have changed - Led Zep's Stairway to Heaven.

Mea culpa

Mea culpa! Mea maxima culpa!

Definition of Irony!

Guess what the definition could be?
The award-winning answer is:

Male Breast Cancer!
An extremely hilarious post here about the world's only male breast cancer comedian, which goes like:
You start your routine.
“Male breast cancer.”
“Now there is the definition of irony.”
Pause. Applause and laughter.
Good, you have them eating out of your hand now.
“Well it sure is better than testicular cancer, now. I wouldn’t mind losing these two at all.”
More laughter, you’re hot tonight.

Stoned I am, brother!


Says it all!

Dogs and Donkeys

If only I had a digicam, the pic would've been here.
But for now, picture this:

A fairly big empty piece of land. Maybe around 120ft x 200 ft.
Tons of litter strewn all over.
On a broken concrete erection in the front is scribbled in paint (in Kannada) -
"Illi kasa esayuvaru naayigaLu, katthegaLu".
Which in English translates to:

"People who litter here are dogs and donkeys"
A woman walks beyond it and dumps a bucketful of garbage.

Happened right in front of my eyes, as I waded through a bus in Bangalore.


Albert Camus once wrote:

To work and create 'for nothing', to sculpt in clay, to know that one's creation has no future, to see one's work destroyed in a day, while being aware that fundamentally, this has no more importance than building for centuries - this is the difficult wisdom that absurd thought sanctions.
Why don't I get these absurd thoughts? Why is absurdity so rare, yet so beautiful?

Burning Man!

This is IT.
I have found it.

This is where I have to be.
At least once.

Maybe, this time

Having spent your entire life exactly where you are tonight in the valley between intent and deed, you must have mastered this, the fragile art of a good excuse, the little things that get you to believe. That get you to believe.

So listen, I'm not trying to prove anything at all here, but don't you think that maybe, this time, you were wrong? You've spent your entire life quick-tongued and always right.
Hasn't being right just let you down?
Right just lets you down.

So listen, I'm not trying to say anything at all here.
There isn't much let, anyway, that hasn't been said.
But don't you think that possibly, this time, it's different?
Don't you think that maybe, this time, you were wrong?

Dancing with the lions

This is a follow-up on my last post on the joy of being an entrepreneur:

I'm 20 years old. I now realize that I am entering this phase of life wherein we are most vulnerable to passions and obsessions (compulsions too!). Just look at what an average 20-year old would have to deal with: college, friends, club, girlfriend, parents. Move on a couple of years and college gets replaced with 'Work. Work. Work.'. And consider a young entrepreneur - it turns into 'WORK. WORK. WORK.'. Coupled with all the other things that keep happening beyond work. Move 5 more years down, and there you see 'Family'.

Juggling all of these is an art called 'Life'. And in it lies bliss.

And then someday we are going to rise up that wind you know,
someday we gonna dance with those lions!

Entrepreneurship, Altruism and the Paradox

I speak to Ram in the morning and he tells me something about Genesis - The Social Entrepreneurship competition of IITM.

I open the site to read this:

Where entrepreneurship takes an altruistic turn...
A neat paradox, ain't it?

Entrepreneurship is what someone does for the joy involved in it. The absolute, selfish joy of creating something new - maybe for the good of the society etc etc, but it is pure, sacred, selfish joy. And can that ever be altruistic?!

Sacrilege! Sacrilege!

The joy

There lies a unique joy in pursuing a dream that only you can see

O' Mother, O' Sweetheart

A late night chat session going on in the apartment, and out of the blue, Doodie chips in seriously:

Tell him - "Once I read one of Tagore's book called 'Two Sisters'. Wherein Tagore explains how a man looks for a motherly figure and a lover simultaneously in a woman.". Tell him - "I found both in her".
And the whole group goes silent.

Intrigued by this, I read the book on a bus journey back home. The intro to the book goes like this:
It is about the eternal conflict that arises when a man does not find a mother figure and a sweetheart in the same person. He needs the former and desires the latter.

Man draws strength from the Mother in a woman and inspiration from the beloved in her. When the two do not meet in the same individual, his heart is torn asunder. The poignancy and the tender irony of its theme makes Two Sisters one of the finest Tagore novels.
Though, the story was unimpressive, the concept of a mother and a sweetheart in a single body seemed interesting.

One line which caught my attention, went like:
Man is fighting a war with Fate everyday of his life; and if the soft, loving hands of a woman binds him and hinders his rugged onward march, it is but normal that he ruthlessly break free from the binding, and carry on his war.

Two Cents of Hope

A chilly Bangalore night. 10 pm.
The city is coming to a halt.
A tiresome day draws to a close.
I am walking back to my apartment talking on my cell.
End the call, and head into the chat house to my right.
Fill my half-filled stomach with a Bhelpuri.
10 rupees. I pay the owner with a worn-out soiled ten-rupee note.
My stomach is filled. Time to head home and sleep.
I start walking back.

A 30-odd year old guy pushes his vegetable cart back home.
Clad in a black lungi (the Sabarimala dress code).
He seems to be stuggling in the cold, up the incline.
His 10 year old daughter walks up behind him and lends him a hand.
Just behind her is her elder sister (probably a couple of years older).
Pushing yet another cart.

A 10-year old kid. A 13-year old kid.
An age to go to school, come back and play in the fields.
Now, clad in a torn scarf pushing a cart in the cold.

If only, one person in each chat house across Bangalore (there must be a 1000-odd such ones), didn't eat that one bhelpuri. Didn't spend that one 10-rupee note. Instead, that was used to educate those two sisters. (That would've been more than ten grand!)

I would have one day woken up in the land of my dreams.
In a fully literate India.
My Two Cents of Hope.

Love, Knowledge and Pity

Came across this amazing philosophy in Ratna's (my guide here at Genesis Micrcochip) website.
Bertrand Russel once said:

"Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong, have governed my life: the longing for love, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind. These passions,like great winds, have blown me hither and thither, in a wayward course, over a great ocean of anguish, reaching to the very verge of despair. I have sought love, first, because it brings ecstasy - ecstasy so great that I would often have sacrificed all the rest of life for a few hours of this joy. I have sought it, next, because it relieves loneliness--that terrible loneliness in which one shivering consciousness looks over the rim of the world into the cold unfathomable lifeless abyss.I have sought it finally, because in the union of love I have seen, in a mystic miniature, the prefiguring vision of the heaven that saints and poets have imagined. This is what I sought,and though it might seem too good for human life, this is what--at last--I have found. With equal passion I have sought knowledge. I have wished to understand the hearts of men. I have wished to know why the stars shine. And I have tried to apprehend the Pythagorean power by which number holds sway above the flux. A little of this, but not much, I have achieved. Love and knowledge, so far as they were possible, led upward toward the heavens. But always pity brought me back to earth. Echoes of cries of pain reverberate in my heart. Children in famine,victims tortured by oppressors, helpless old people a burden to their sons, and the whole world of loneliness, poverty, and pain make a mockery of what human life should be. I long to alleviate this evil, but I cannot, and I too suffer. This has been my life. I have found it worth living, and would gladly live it again if the chance were offered me."
Love, yes, something that can change the way you look at the world. Can change your passions itself! Something that relieves loneliness whose beauty is short-lived. And is it heaven, well, maybe!

The urge to learn about everything under the sun is what drives most of my actions, knowingly or otherwise. Maybe all my so-called passions - 'Entrepreneurship, Architecture, Art, Psychology, Philosophy", can be put under this single umbrella-ic passion of learning.

I might rave about Objectivism and egoism as a virtue, but everytime I see pain and poverty, it brings me down to the point of crying. As Russel puts it, I long to alleviate this evil. And I know that I alone cannot. And I suffer.

I concur, Russel. It's worth living.

Cheerio 2006!

As 2006 just slipped out of the screen on my cell-phone, I realized it was yet another new year, yet another time to mechanically wish every soul you know - "Happy New Year!", yet another time when you receive SMSes which go like "Hope I am the first one to wish you a Very Happy New Year", yet another night for me to doze off, as I do every night!

Anyway, for the record, Wish you a great new year!


This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own and not those of the people, institutions or organizations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.


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