Popsicle On The Ground Floor

It’s just few hours away that I pack my stuffs and leave the college. I’ve completed all my official procedures but there is this one thing left to do. Writing this bid-adieu blog post – my last post from college.

This blog has been one of the best things I did in college. Whenever I needed something to tell and didn’t want it to be limited to the audience I had physical interaction with, this blog presented itself as a sophisticated medium to vent out. Even after 3 years, it feels like beginning. I have a long way to go.

There are few major things on the top of my head to write in this blog post. Firstly about this abstract title I had put – ‘Popsicle On The Ground Floor‘. It’s hard to deduce any correlation of this childish rhetoric with anything I’m associated with. To be honest, it just popped in my head one day during my usual walk around the hostel area. As I tried to fit in to what I was going to write about, it gradually started making sense.

My (or better I put ours) whole college life was journey for a popsicle, a symbolism for reward in return for the efforts – popsicle of knowledge. We were made to believe that in order to get that reward, we would have to climb up, trudge and in fierce situations even crush others in order to be at the top. The trail of wisdom was transformed into a track for the rat race and it irked me often.

I was here to learn engineering, realize the importance of innovation and learn the art of real-life problem solving but this would have been nearly impossible had I confined myself within academic domains. All that most people worried about was marks and it infused a genuine hatred in me for the same.

Although I did find myself in the company of enthusiastic peers who were sincere towards their work. I learnt a lot from them. With time, I realized it was all within us throughout. Whatever we want to do in life, the itinerary for entire journey lie with us. But with the traditional path, the importance of a paper (degree) takes over the weight of our aspiration. Although I do comprehend the intangible value of our college education and I would be ever grateful to this place for providing me a compelling ambiance but the real reward was already there with us right from where we started and it will always be.

When I started my college, I told myself that the day I go out from here, I should be a person with no regrets. My entire endeavor here was channelized towards that one goal. But let me tell you this truth where the inconsistency lies – there will always be something small or big, major or minor, that will bother you till the last day or after. We as a naive being, venture into the pursuit of perfection but forget that ‘to err is human‘. It’s a good thing in a way that it shows you were not stagnant. It shows that you were striving to move forward and not remaining still.

One such thing that would always pinch me was to not put forward my entrepreneurial venture – Nightmeals. Yes this has been a secretive ordeal till date but I’m going to write about it openly today. Several times on this blog I have emphasized on the importance to publishing your work. When you attempt to do something revolutionary, you either succeed or you gain experience. But it can’t be called a success or failure if was never put it to test in the first place.

In our junior year, me and one of my friends decided to solve the huge cafeteria problem (food related problems in general) we had in hostels. We identified the pain points and devised a solution adorned with tons of features like opening/closing time, automatizing orders, collection & payment, etc. It was all there to reduce the unnecessary waiting time while your order was prepared or to cut down the hassle of coming all the way to the cafeteria only to find it closed. We felt the genuine requirement for it and Nightmeals was the perfect solution to assist students in this segment.

We were naive in terms of skills but the idea was well validated. Eventually we started working and things started coming together. We began to see our goal clearly and worked well beyond our usual academics & other occupations in order to achieve the traction. But what should have been otherwise extensive (and it would have if the entire thing lied under my control), the work kept on delaying.

The biggest mistake was to wait till it was all suited to launch. Just when we were ready, we screwed up with the code/database management and then our end semester examination approached. Afterwards we were churned up into vicious fight for placements. Things went downhill and the momentum lost was never regained. I’m planning to write about the tech specs of this fiasco on my tech-blog and the things I learnt from that, so keep eye on that.

The bottom line is that the idea that I cherished dearly for so long could never come to life. None one would know what shape it took, how it worked or even worse that it ever existed if not from the mere words written here. We lost it because we weren’t serious about it throughout. We eyed the end result but didn’t think about the journey thoroughly as like numerous wonderful ideas that die everyday somewhere. Takeaway – Discipline is the key.

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My regular readers would be well aware of my fascination with film-making in the last semester. I have embedded lots of my videos in my previous blog posts. If you haven’t checked out my YouTube channel, I would highly suggest you to (this blog is the only platform where I indulge in self promotion 😛 ). Here’s my latest video –

Making videos kept me really occupied during the last semester. Also it was a great way to escape from the eventual boredom that kicked in as the ending approached. Most of the times, I was thinking ideas for my next video, shooting, watching a lot of editing tutorials and later editing the footage. Initially most of the efforts were put in persuading my friends to be the subject of my videos but later, funny as it may sound, I started getting so many requests from my friends for casting them as my videos gained viewers’ attention.

Being in the college during a running semester meant that I would be spending most of the time within the campus (my room to be specific). This confinement of space gave me an opportunity to explore it from different perspectives. As is evident from my videos, all of them were shot in IITH except Vizag Diaries episodes.

Thing is, I seriously got into film-making and storytelling after shifting to my new dorm in permanent campus. I was in ODF earlier where our temporary campus was located, for 3 years. Now I wonder what all stuffs could I have done if I had started making movies right from my freshmen year. I did start learning cinematography there though (later borrowing DSLR camera from the seniors and photography club to learn) but again it’s about finishing and publishing. That happened only after shifting. So that’s that.

Few days back I went back there to get the no-dues signature from the workshop and I was able to picturize those familiar places as the lost canvas. I could have used them a little more. Although for my last visit this time, I didn’t forget to capture few footage as memorabilia – hostel area, old insti, the workshop and of course the foresty way to the workshop – and what better way for it for a film-maker than to make a film out of it. I’m currently working on the ODF montage but here’s the glimpse that I made using Google Photos –

https://goo.gl/photos/8hfig1cxg4DvVfBa7

As I sit in my room for the last time and write this post, I feel a bit nostalgic about leaving this place. This has been my home away from home for the past one year. All my creations, my critical decisions, my transformed self have come out of this – I have formed an everlasting memory. Leaving it does feel strange even though I’m very well aware of eternal legacy. This has been good, but it’s time to say good bye for even better tomorrow 🙂

Stay tuned. Peace! ✌

Done Is Better Than Perfect

Read it, write it, print it like those famous quotes hanging on your walls or just memorize it for the time eternity but keep this in mind – “No matter how much of deep shit you’re stuck in, there is always a way out.

You can solve majority of your problems (or you wouldn’t get into them in the first place) if you’re true to yourself. Honesty is not telling yourself (the infamous) “All is well” but rather to introspect what lead to mortifying circumstances. It may seem like a strong word to use but consequence of you fooling yourself could be disastrous.

So why am I telling you this all of a sudden?

It’s the sudden urge of circumstances. Things happen like they always do. They teach us things like they’re supposed to. I learn them and sometimes write here like I should do.

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This post is not yet finished but I had to put this out because ‘done is better than perfect.‘ I could wait till I have tweaked, refined and polished every word I’ve written. I could keep on reforming every sentence until it exactly represents what’s there in my mind.

But then may be in the due course I would forget to do all this. This post would be lost in oblivion. It would just sit in the drafts like many others of the past. It would be like my videos which I worked on, in bits and pieces, over the past few days but still didn’t release them. Why? Because I couldn’t materialize them to the point of my satisfaction.

Here’s my own little version –

It’s the end of this month – the last month of college. I needed to write a lot of things in this space. It’s said that the beginning is always the hardest but in the retrospect of perfection, I think finishing and putting it out in open is the toughest part. So I thought to be vulnerable this time. I thought of leaving it incomplete. See here it is, my insecurities, my struggles, the so called ‘behind the scenes‘ of Divine_Lifez.

 

A Cause That Went Missing

Isolated from the herd of wits and bullshit,

knocked over, by the choice of mine

By the choice of yours, I surmised

The onsetting dusk, I lamented;

 

For what it’s worth, I tried, mending

The broken bond, the shattered link,

Asphyxiating every ounce of my conscience

Of reason, now nearly lost, faded;

 

O thou confidante, my mate of ages,

Where thy friendship paled,

Faith vanished, yacht of trust sailed;

Leaving me here, belittled

By the mockery of circumstances,

You meandered into an abyss,

Never meant for me to wander;

 

Weathered, toiled & trudged, I have

To be where I resolutely stand, I tried

To pull you back from the chasm

In futile, for all in vain, at last I inquired,

I questioned – is this how it ends?

I prayed, not, yet if not otherwise,

Among the scarce choices,

I had to choose right, for the multitudes

That surrounds my mortal self, unaware you,

Blinded by basic human jealousy, it affronts

More than penitence, it outrages my senses;

Reminiscing the chronicle of obscured meaning

I now sing this ode to the end of an era;

 

I struggled writing this piece because I wanted to bring in as much clarity without being specific in depiction. This poem recounts my personal experience of recent times, which, as I recall, I have encountered in past too but this instance is much more intense. It felt like an unexpected blow to the fragile castle I was cherishing all this time.

I do not intend to incentivize over the broken bits but rather remind myself that it is a part of life. It hurts and it teaches me a lesson. It may seem irrational yet it begets rationality in my maturer self. It kills the hope yet shapes my expectations.

Author’s Note – I write about certain events on this blog because either they need to be told or I want to document them as learning experiences. I do not expect others to gain much from the later category, given their specific contexts. This is one such post. It has troubled me recently and I needed to vent out the feeling.

Vuja De : Theory of Originals

When you look at the title, the spontaneous thought that crosses your mind is – “This guy have gotten it wrong. Isn’t it déjà vu, a french word for the feeling that something has already happened?“. I totally appreciate your interception but I still stand on the one written there. It’s a philosophy that I follow as a creator. It’s the guiding light on my journey of being an outlier.

I wouldn’t dive into the formal definition, though different webpages seems to offer different versions. Here’s the notion that caught my attention – It’s a feeling when you perceive something familiar in a different way. Having a new perspective for something, you’ve already interacted with, multiple times. Totally opposite of ‘déjà vu‘, isn’t it?

On a quest to produce something original, I’ve embarked on a mission to bring my thoughts into reality. There’s just so many wonderful things that a mind is capable of producing. All we have to do is to be willing to work hard. After all, everything that you see around yourself is someone’s brain-child.

I would like to share some of my works this month to the readers, as I had indicated in my previous posts. It is more like the ‘March 2017 Recap‘ for me (other than regular academic stuffs). So lets dive in and see what interesting stuffs this post has to offer –

A DJ Night Story 

Approaching to the end of our wonderful B.Tech years, it was our last DJ night in college. I thought of making it special. How, you ask? I think writing the whole story would be mere repetition, so I encourage you to read the description of this video as well.

This video gained significant momentum in college and everyone seemed to like it. Some of my friends shared it on social medias. My efforts were appreciated and I was on the receiving end of numerous accolades. After this big hit, it was the time to get into the normal shoe. I tried to work on few other things afterwards but somehow I couldn’t bring them into fruition.

There’s this one suggestion or advice I would like to share with my readers – “If you work tremendously on something, make sure that you finish and bring it to conclusion. Go ahead and put the result out there. Speaking bluntly, no one cares how hard or persistently your tried, if you didn’t bring it into fruition then it’s futile. Don’t throw the ‘either you succeed or you learn’ philosophy because even to fail, you had to put your work out in open in the first place. Don’t leave something mid-way. I have learnt it the hard way. Always finish.”

Aim

Much-awaited mid-sem break came afterwards and it was the time to go on an awesome trip to Vizag. Me and my friends had contemplated over several places we could go and after much scrutiny, we zeroed down to this and man, it was refreshing! I thought of writing an entire blog post on my experience there but this time I would let the visuals explain the extravaganza –

I still have clips left for with Ep. 3 but I have a different idea for its execution. It has certain requirements which I have to fulfill & I’m working on it.

Now a days, I’ve been putting out WhatsApp stories daily. For those who don’t know, WhatsApp much like Instagram has integrated a new functionality wherein you can post pictures or videos as your status. It disappears after 24 hours (call it the post acquisition facebook-effect 😛 ) Thus it gives me a platform to regularly practice and showcase my small edits. My lonely evening walks are quite effective in generating new ideas for these videos. As it’s said – best things in life happen to you when you’re alone.

Being original, specially for an artist, is a journey of self-discovery. It’s an opportunity to introspect your thoughts, your will, your desire and in turn, create wonders. It’s not an easy path but certainly a fulfilling one. When you see your own creation being a thing of inspiration for someone else, you realize the power that reside within yourself.

I completely adore this video from one of my favourite artists on YouTube, Peter McKinnon 

I plan to post more of my works in coming days. Hope you enjoyed this little post. Till the next one, keep learning, take inspirations, get inspired and then put in your ‘X’ factor to churn out something you can call your own. Ciao! 🙂

Plunged Into A Quagmire

Numerous times I’ve been apologetic in past few weeks for not posting regularly on my blog. But not so much this time. I think to ensure the quality of the posts, I need to dive deeper into the subject matter I’m going to write about and that needs time. Every blog post here reflects my thoughts, learning and experiences. Even when the posts are work of imagination, the inspiration have been drawn from the real life happenings.

Last few days were spent in sheer contemplation. Hefty ounce of my attentive energy were soaked in those thoughts. Neither I could mindfully be present in my classes, nor was I of much help in meetings. These are the regular chores of mine where I should ensure my involvement but I couldn’t. I was being apprehensive of my own thoughts.

I didn’t stop making art thought. It’s my gateway for escaping the reality. Atleast when I’m lost into the excitement of creation, the former thoughts take a back seat. Just when I’m finished, they swoop right back in. I think they’re necessary evil for creators. They’re the inspirations behind my new ventures while they make me enraged of myself at times. Why am I holding them within while I know the way to get rid of? May be because I’m not sure.

So what these thoughts are about? I would let my diary entry from past few days do the talking –

Call it a life hack or philosophy, there’s a sentence I abide by. It says – ‘Either act or forget.’ Simple, isn’t it? So when I had this spectacular view of an ocean before me and a wondrous cheerful city on the back. When all my friends were in joyous mood and I had every reason to be the same, I felt bound. There was a thought that gripped me from fully en-living all this – the thought of you. When the subconscious feelings of one thing overshadows all the rest then you know, there’s something which has come to be of more importance. I needed to deal with it first and that’s what I did. 

When you’re on the receiver’s end of numerous accolades, yet you crave for that one validation then you should know that someone has come to be of more prominence. I had to do everything to seek it and that I did. 

You know how I’ve always explored the realm of conscious decisions, sometimes this heart wants to try out the triviality of life. Just enjoy the uncertainty of the happenings. Just experience the excitement of totally being in the present. I don’t want to even think about the consequences. What’s more important for me is to act.

All these may seem pretty vague. Heck, its even hazy for me too. But my helplessness is disguised in that obscurity itself. As I said – I’m not sure. I did put in my efforts but I doubt if they were rightly channelized. Sometimes when I reflect upon the wondrous moments of past, a part of me says – “shed away these apprehensions. Take the step. Just one more time. You need not overthink. The story still resides within you. What about the selflessness and doing everything irrespective of reciprocation. ” 

While the other part says – “enough on your side. You’ve done what you were supposed to.” And then this quote echoes in mind – “If you love something, set it free. If it comes back to you, it’s yours. If it doesn’t, it never was.” And I’m left hanging between the fights of my own two sides. Somehow the latter have the dominance or may be I’m not sure about the former.

Let me know in comments if you’ve ever been in similar circumstances and how did you freed yourself of your thoughts. How far would you go to make someone realize what they mean to you? Where do you draw the line between desire & self-respect? Are you the one who waits or the one who act without second thoughts? Till the next post, ciao!

A Man Of Values

A man of will,

Of hard work & determination,

Of perseverance & empathy,

Of love & compassion,

Of creativity & imagination,

And being passionately curious.


One line that governs them all –

Passion is in the risk.

A big happy birthday to myself & my lovely nephew. 

And yeah Happy Holi everyone! 

Author’s Note – A really short post because I’m currently on a trip. So I don’t have proper net connection (I’m using a restaurant’s Wi-Fi 😛 ) and the time for formatting. Will do it once I go back to college. 

On A Music Spree

Hey everyone, it’s been a while since my last blog post. I hope my valentine had enough time to comprehend my uncomprehended euphoria (if she read it of-course). Anyway, few days after the last post, my midsems started. It went for a week and then I went on a music spree..umm..actually I think I still am.

Prior to that I had posted my long-awaited Evening@IITH video on YouTube. Check it out here –

Yeah so back on the music spree topic because that’s what this post is going to be about. Since I’m reading ‘The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes‘ these days, I would
like to give its account in that style –

You somehow come across a song (YouTube recommendations work wonders sometimes) and you like it a lot. You go on listening to it repeatedly. Though unwillingly, one day you take a leap of faith and try out a different song by the same artist (or probably a different one in the list) and then you say – ‘Whoa! it’s more enthralling than the previous one. You get hooked to it.

You keep on listening until you get fed up of tapping that replay button or probably it doesn’t excite you anymore. Like the previous cases, for the gazillionth time, you think  -“what was there in it in the first place?” Then you find a new one and the cycle repeats.

You didn’t delete the last song because it’s still within the domain of your recent favorites. The songs get cumulated and you keep on making playlists. Your P&C knowledge come in handy here and you try out varied combinations everytime.  

Sometimes old songs make it to the playlist because you think you might have forgotten how it sounded like. Since it was once your favorite, you feel like the old memory being rejuvenated. It’s all being shuffled and played.

You dance, you jump or you sit and ponder – what the hell is this love-hate relationship with these songs? You get tired and you wanna break free but couldn’t because it’s the converse of Stockholm syndrome (Google says its Lima Syndrome but I don’t find its implication here).

Well that sounded nothing like the brilliant work by Sir Conan Doyle. Yeah! well atleast it was not in mundane first person tone. Welcome to the journey inside the mind of a music freak. There’s this usual biological structure and then there are inconspicuous rhythms floating around. I know my friend would strongly disagree with my music taste (and me calling myself a music freak) but thankfully he doesn’t read my blog 😛

It’s the musical valley up there where each external song input stimulates an enigmatic experience. Also there would never be a single genre which you could narrow down your taste to. It highly depends on your mood but I think our resonance frequencies aren’t that well defined. Sometimes an outcast tune might pluck the right string like this song did for me.

On my perpetual journey to find new sources, I’ve come across some wonderful channels, consequently artists, whose work simply amazes me. I would list some of them below so that you could have your own little extravaganza –

SoundCloud – Hands down to this. If you follow the right artists, you will never run out of musical entertainment. Also almost every YouTube channel or indie-composer would have their SoundCloud account, you just need to dig a little bit.

NCS (NoCopyrightSounds) – One of the biggest music labels out there, especially for EDM, deep house type genres (I mostly explore these). They recently reached 10M subscribers.

Spinnin’ Records – Another awesome music label. They had some great hits recently. I found out Lucas & Steve DJ duo here itself.

MrSuicideSheep

Proximity

Monstercat

Tasty

Tom Rosenthal – Very captivating, serene & thoughtful songs.

FlumeAUS

Postmodern Jukebox

Trap City 

Majestic Casual

Fueled by Ramen

Amarante Music

All the aforementioned names are music labels which hosts a lot of wonderful artists. I haven’t mentioned any individual besides Tom Rosenthal (as I told, the outcast tune that struck). There are a lot of them producing some great works – cross your finger for the YouTube or Spotify (I still have to try it out) recommendations to let you discover them.

Also these channels really help me in finding music for my videos. Sometimes these music in conjunction with out-of-the-box editing will land you in the viral zone. I would write about this in my next post. Hope you enjoyed this little post on the musical side of mine. Stay tuned. Ciao!