Hi. Welcome [back] to DeMeStified. Happy [belated] Eid.
Michael did a post a while ago about some of the weird things he does and I made the mistake of commenting. Now, he’s asked that I compile and post a similar list. Hopefully, you’ll see it soon. The next post, however, should be the start of a series featuring a few of my favourite contemporaries. Still piecing the central idea together.
I threw a #SpotTheDifference challenge a few days ago about a picture I took and had to retake [cover pic for Potential Independence]. I had forgotten to clean the scales on the tap before taking the initial shot. Interestingly, only three people cracked it – and that’s from all of facebook, twitter, whatsapp, bbm and God-knows-where-else. Some of the attempts just reminded me of our inherent tendency to complicate otherwise simple things. It was a load of fun, though.
“Keep your best wishes, close to your heart and watch what happens” ― Tony DeLiso
“Just play. Have fun. Enjoy the game” – Michael Jordan
In the last post, we discussed the fulfillment of potential. What we forgot to mention was that we’ve got all sorts of potentials. No blame for assuming it was all about work. Quite a lot of us believe that, for life to have full value, we must labour to the dying embers of our strength. But, it’s hardly the case.
There’s something that has kept the earth ‘alive’ all these years. It’s called – in the simplest of terms – balance! The earth revolves around the sun – but never forgets to spin. Revolution and rotation; forever in planetary accord. One without the other would mean eternal winter or summer or day or night for different parts of the earth. Unthinkable chaos, mimicked only by a life without balance.
The most understated fact of human existence is that we carry as much potential for fun as we do for ‘real’ work. And, a lack of expression here is just as detrimental. A teacher of mine once studied so hard that he forgot how to spell ‘BUT’ in an essay. All the more interesting because he was my English teacher. The “five-minute-madness” thing, though grossly exaggerated, is not entirely myth.
We all want to plant a flag at the summit of our careers. We maybe even dream of battling the demons of work to death and standing victorious over their mangled remains. But, sometimes, the harder we work, the harder it seems to get – until we cool off. Today’s post is about the expression of a different kind of potential – cooling off.
The fire never really dies; watch a grandfather with his grandchildren. His expression of fun might have been stifled by age or society’s perfection of him – but in the presence of those little things, he may just lose himself and let it all out.
I don’t want to wake one day, feeling like the man who spent his life stifling laughter only to blurt it all out in his old age. It’ll be sad to realize in those grey years that life’s fun simply passed us by. In the end, memories are all we have. They’d be the souvenirs our hearts clutch when our hands are too weak to hold much else. They’ll engulf us like whispers from a million hair-strands. And, it’ll be nice if those moments could resurrect the smiles, reminding us of all the fun we’ve had.
I finally put up a list of things I must have done or experienced before my last breath. While some are no more than mere cravings, others have some explanation.
Imagine being reminded with every passing second how much can go wrong – and yet persisting on a cause. This sort of experience re-emphasizes the nature of the future. It will come, whether or not we brace. Just like being born, once you take that jump, there’s no going back. You will ‘meet’ the ground; the question is ‘how?’. It’ll also be great to watch reality gradually blur into focus. To see the meaningless dots and specks grow in stature and relevance. Of course, the adrenaline rush is undeniable. And if the first attempt doesn’t spill juice in your pants, very few things ever can. This one, I must do in a few months.
I plan to take a humanitarian trip at some point. To travel somewhere far and desolate as a relief-worker, leaving all else behind. This craving is not easy to explain – but there are some things one just has to see to appreciate life and well-being. No amount of reading or hear-say will ever come close to firsthand experience.
A proposal is always a good thing – the laughter, the smiles, the kisses and tears. But, forgive me – bum that I am – for a bit of skepticism. We’re not really expected to propose to a random passerby. I mean, she must have been expecting it in some way – so some of the drama is a bit overboard for me [again, forgive me]. But, how about one finds a lousy excuse to gather a truckload of friends and family in a room, gets down on one knee, pops a ring and asks his darling [and legal] wife of many years to marry him? Just for the looks, the laughs – the whispers and shivers! Yeah, I have such plans. Good thing Ms bRinE doesn’t come here.
I intend to play soccer well into my fifties [God give grace]. But considering the law of natural selection, I’ll be stupid to think I’d still be top-brass amidst a pack of teenagers. So, how about I just own the football club? That way I’d be picked anytime I want to play. Okay, that’s not entirely true. I’d just really love to be able to unite a pack of kids through soccer – particularly those who don’t have much else to look forward to. I’d like to be able to provide them the support and resources to become enviable individuals and sportsmen. Of course, I’d want to play ball with them too.
This one is pretty simple. I’m sure you’ve heard of the Autobahns. They’re German expressways without official speed-limits. If anything, you could be fined for driving slowly. Here’s the plan: Buy an Audi [RS8, RS4 or A4], have it shipped to Germany. Meet it there, ‘test’ it out on the autobahn and have it shipped back home [wherever that is]. No lessons here – just plain old adrenaline and tons of silly. Of course, the car must be a manual drive!
Not sure if ever mentioned how, growing up, my parents tossed my siblings and I into a kids-choir. Means I also forgot to mention that we gradually waltzed our different ways out. I even went as far as damaging my voice to sound masculine. It was all a little too late, though; the fire was already lit. I keep having this yearning for a musical performance. And, I strongly suspect it’ll be rock. Nothing too serious or professional – maybe just a pack of bored guys. I’ll drum, play the bass or back the lead singer up. Should get to learning to play bass soon. We have to value what we have while we do.
I plan to visit a few temples around the world and go the whole nine yards – costumes, [some*] rites, etc. India and China are top of my list. I’ve always imagined the feeling from movie scenes. To sit with a pack of strangers, totally lost in culture and language – but connected by the tranquility. Of course, I won’t be totally lost; I’ll be getting people to take pictures with/for me.
I’d like to have a TV feature at some point. Not sure yet what it’ll be about. Maybe a little acting or some sort of documentary?
You know how people dread traveling and tend to complain before, during and after? Well, some of us are the exact opposite. We love road-trips, air-strips, all sorts of trips – even mind-trips! I like how the chaos of the airport gently transforms into order. How total strangers sometimes go from seatmates to friends. How patterns sift out of the randomness through the pores of purpose or destination. Plus, a good escape is needed every now and then.
- Cook Outs
My bro and I once tried to invent a delicacy from boiled paw-paw. It didn’t go too well – but that was ages ago. Things are a lot more edible now – a development I’m truly proud of. So, every once in a while, I love to have friends and family over and actually do the cooking. It’s been a while since the last one, but I intend to make a regular feature of it. Of course, it’ll be unannounced or at very short notice – so no one factors me into their feeding calendars.
- The Loan
I keep having different ‘best-friends’; I count seven now. And, each is actually my best friend as per a context of my life. I figure someone is going to want to know who my real best pal was – maybe long after I’m gone. So, to resolve this I’ve come up with a rather convenient theory. I’m going to take a loan from one of them and refuse to pay back. Nothing major; 500 bucks tops. Whichever amongst them I owe that money to when I pass would have been my best-est friend. Then, I can chill somewhere on the road to heaven and buy a map with it. The others don’t have to know.
There goes my non-exhaustive ‘todo list’. I’m sure a few items will creep in over the years – but I don’t intend to let any fall out.
Please be free to share any of the fun things you have planned for the future.
Can’t leave without mentioning my long-running battle with Ms bRinE. She’s, at least, 5-10 times smarter than me – and she wins quite often. But, this time, I think she’s picked the wrong fight. She wants me to live till 120 – or at least plan for it. She’s even dug up some scriptures to support her stance – but I won’t be convinced. In fact, I’ve threatened to stop feeding well and exercising after a convenient age – hoping it hastens my exit. I’m not a huge fan of living ‘overtime’. I believe in staying long enough to fulfill potential, and then a little longer to raise credible succession. Anything after that is borrowed time – and a wise man keeps his debts small.
Thanks for being here. See you in the next post. And, don’t forget to have fun. A silly video here may help get you started.