Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Think before you Link

Information spreads like wildfire. Irrespective of whether it is right or wrong or verified or not, people just post, email, text anything they read. This actually goes a long way back. When in India too, I would invariably receive 1 text at least everyday asking to contact some number if our blood group was so&so type and also more importantly to forward the message to help save a poor life. I do not even know if anyone, even ones who probably belonged to the required blood group, tried calling those numbers. I tried calling those numbers every time, just to check the authenticity and not a single time did the number turn out to be valid. INVALID every SINGLE time!!!

What really cracked me up was this:

“This October has 5 Fridays, 5 Saturdays and 5 Sundays all in one month. It happens only once in 823 years.”

That October, scores of people on my Facebook shared this status message, and not once without even thinking about i for a minute. Instead of getting to the nitty-gritty details, I would say read this blog ashe has already expressed it amazingly well:

These are instances that we just pass on because we think it is interesting and cool and like in the SMS case, we care about someone else and although these bits of information are wrong, they do not particularly harm anyone.

But last night, I saw quite a few status messages about a BBC NEWSFLASH, saying this:

BBC FLASHNEWS: Japan government confirms radiation leak at Fukushima nuclear plants. Asia countries should take necessary precautions. If rain comes, remain indoors first 24hrs. Close doors & windows. Swab neclskin with betadine where thyroid area is, radiation hits thyroid first. Take extra precautions. Radiation may hit Phil at starting 4pm today. Pls send to your loved ones.

Well now, this is serious. This is scary. The world, especially Japan is already in a state of Panic. And people tend to believe it. People tend to pass this information on. But what they forget to do is think about what they are reading, analyse it, check its authenticity. This hoax message passing around I am sure caused a lot of unwarranted panic amongst a lot of people. Firstly, it is very irresponsible of people adding to the existing panic by generating such false news. And secondly, it is again irresponsible to share it and spread the Panic. The Government of Phillipines had to release an official notice to calm the people. This is a whole lot of unnecessary business that happened and just got me ranting off and leaving with a hopeful note that people will verify facts before passing them on in the future.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Writing Poetry

As I sat at our usual lab table, I saw a black Parker Pen lying at the desk. I have always enjoyed writing writing with Parker Pens; the sheer smoothness they provide is magical. But every Parker Pen I ever bought would end up getting stolen or I would lose it! So, after 5 or so trials, I decided I was definitely jinxed and I stopped buying Parkers. And today, after so many years I see a Parker and I could not resist to use it and write my name. Well, I have obsession to write my name many times. I write it in many fonts, languages...and alright, let me not digress.

So i open the cap of the pen, and this one turns out to be an Ink Pen!! Now, again, I have not written with an Ink Pen since my 10th standard preparatory exams. You see, I was told by everyone that it is better to write board exams with Ball Point Pens, because, God Forbid, what if the evaluator spilled coffee or juice or water on your answer sheet! Your fate is doomed!! Your entire life depends on your board results, after all!

So it so happens, I resist change. I had never used ball point pens much and I was stubborn to not use them. But it also happens that I worry. So I worried that I might be the one singled out unlucky girl whose exam papers might have coffee spilled on it. And yes, I worry like that. But again, I am not the one who makes life altering changes such as these without weighing her options well. So, yes, I actually spilled coffee and water on some of my old notes to see how badly they were distorted. Now, I would have settled for an Ink Pen, had the case been that I could even partially read what was written. But anyways, finally, the Ball Point Pen won and I haven't really written with Ink Pens since then.

And so, today, it was sheer joy to write with a Black Inked Parker Pen, a triple treat. And so, just writing my name, felt like writing poetry!

Sunday, March 6, 2011


As we grow up, we learn that even the one person that wasn't supposed to ever let you down probably will. You will have your heart broken probably more than once and it's harder every time. You'll break hearts too, so remember how it felt when yours was broken. You'll fight with your best friend. You'll blame a new love for things an old one did. You'll cry because time is passing too fast, and you'll eventually lose someone you love. So take too many pictures, laugh too much, and love like you've never been hurt because every sixty seconds you spend upset is a minute of happiness you'll never get back.

Don't be afraid that your life will end, be afraid that it will never begin!


Found these lines saved in some document in my hard drive. Blogging it for posterity.

An Equal Music

But never either found another
To free the hollow heart from painting -
They stood aloof, the scars remaining
Like cliffs which had been rent asunder;
A dreary sea now flows between; -
But neither heat, nor frost, nor thunder,
Shall wholly do away, I ween,
The marks of that which once hath been.

Excerpt from An Equal Music