Thursday, March 31, 2011

Biphasic sleep log - Day 69 - 30th March

Not exactly as per plan but close to it.

Evening 30th: I was home early because of my guitar class this evening and tried the early nap from 1730. It took me all of 10 minutes to fall asleep today, but there are reasons. One, I was trying to sleep early, two, there's more light these days at that time, three, my mind was active because of all the stuff going on in my life. Nothing bad, just exciting.

Then I got a call in the middle of my nap. It was only a minute long and then I tried to go back to sleep. So I set a fresh alarm to sleep another 20 minutes. It worked and the whole nap thing finally finished at 1830.

Actually, I find that I am lucid much more quickly now if I get interrupted by a phone call during my nap. Once I open my eyes and pick up the phone, the party on the other side never knows I was asleep a second ago.

Energy levels were good. Guitar class was good. Learning capabilities great.

Morning 31st: Around the later part of the evening about 2300 or started to feel a little bit like I was in-between sleeps. Not sleepy, but like sleep was due. Slept on the normal time at 2345 with an alarm for 0430.

Woke up by the alarm, turned it off solving the captcha calmly with every intention to get up. But then somehow slid back and woke up at 0530 by my guitar video alarm.

Felt fine except regretting the time lost.

Energy levels: 100%
Body: Fine
Health: Residual cold symptoms
Mood: Excited

Much of the excitement comes from the fact that it is my last day at the current job and I would be leaving early. And that I have plans for every hour this evening as soon as I step out of this office. :) 

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Baba Aur Dhoni

Place: Baba Ka Darbar
Date: Day of World-Cup Semi-Final with Pakistan
Time: Morning

Sanyasin1 comes to Baba with a smile.

Sanyasin1: Baba, Dhoni ji aaye hain.

Baba: Achchha tabhi main kahoon ye mahila bhakt sab itna muskura kyon rahi hain! Bulao, balike, bulao, Bharat ke sher ko.

Dhoni comes in.

Dhoni: Baba pranam. Aapka aashirvaad lene aaya hoon.

Baba: Vijayi bhav, putra! Apna naam saarthak karo. Dhoni ho to dho dalo Pakistan ko.

Dhoni: Baba, lekin ek samasya hai.

Baba: Bolo baalak.

Dhoni: Baba, jab main pitch par hota hoon to ladkiyan bada distract karti hain. Kaisi kaisi khoobsurat ladkiyan line deti hai ki kya bataoon aap ko.

Baba: Arre beta, kanya_en agar Bharat ke star ko nahin line dengi to kya Salman Khan ko line dengi?

Dhoni: Par baba dhyaan to bant_ta hai na!

Baba: Haan baalak, aik samay par ek hi game mein dhyaan rakho warna..

Dhoni: Baba even Pakistani girls itni line deti hai, apne players ki taraf dekhti bhi nahin..

Baba: Beta, Bharat ke gabru jawanon ko Pakistan hi nahin har desh ki sundariyaan line deti hai..par pitch par tum sirf khel mein dhyaan rakho.

Dhoni: Magar kaise baba, kaise?!

Baba: Thehro, hum tumhen aik picture message bhej rahe hain.

Dhoni's Android phone beeps, he takes it out, looks at Baba's message and shudders.

Dhoni: Kitni daraawani photo hai! Baba, kaun hai ye?

Baba: Ye Rakhi Sawant ki maa hai.

Dhoni: Oh, magar baba...

Baba: Iss photo ko print kar ke apne bat ke peechhe chipka do. Jab bhi man vichlit hone lage, bas isse dekh lena, stree jaati se tumhara interest hi chala jaayega.

Dhoni: Wah, Baba, aap mahaan hain! Baba ki jai!

Sanyasin1: Android wale baba ki...

Bhakt Crowd: JAI!

Baba: Jao, vijayi bhav!

[Now we wait and see if Dhoni followed Baba's advice.]

Ghazal from Shamim Jaipuri

कितनी राहत है दिल टूट जाने के बाद
ज़िंदगी से मिले मौत आने के बाद

लज़्ज़त-ए-सजदा-ए-सन्ग-ए-दर क्या कहें (उसकी चौखट पर सर झुकाने का मज़ा)
होश ही कब रहा सर झुकाने के बाद

क्या हुआ हर मसर्रर्त (खुशी) अगर छिन गई
आदमी बन गया गम उठाने के बाद

रात का माजरा किस से पूछें "शमीम"
क्या बनी बज़्म पर मेरे आने के बाद

The image is another ghazal by Shamim Jaipuri.

Edit: My apologies. Now that I read the ghazal fully (my speed is pathetic) the Shayar's name is Hasan. But it's a lovely ghazal so I am gonna leave the image unharmed.

Kabhi kitaabon mein phool rakhna kabhi darakhton pe naam likhna,
Hamein bhi hai yaad aaj tak wo nazar se harf-e-salaam likna.

Dosa are the memories...

Long, long time ago in a city far, far away used to live a small boy, yes, me. Just like any other boy, my prime source of nutrition was my mother's cooking. My mother is a very good cook and I used to love her food. But once in a while my elder brother, KP, would take me out to a restaurant. Just him and me. And we would have dosa.

The restaurant was nothing fancy, just a small neighbourhood shop would be more of an accurate title. But I used to love those little outings for various reasons. For one, the dosa used to be very delicious. For another, that was the only time I used to get to eat with a knife and fork. Of course, the variety in food and a chance to go out were all added attractions as well.

In time, that tradition tapered out, especially since we moved to another place, still within Delhi, when I was 7. But I never forgot those occasions.

By now I have eaten in many countries, many cities and sampled many cuisines within the confines of my vegetarian lifestyle. I have gone out to restaurants of all types, small dhaba shops to 5-star restaurants. I have paid for these great meals myself, eaten on expense account and been treated by others. But if I have to look back and pick just one food that is the best of them all it would have to be that Dosa that cost very little and was paid for by my brother!

Biphasic sleep log - Day 68 - 29th March

This will be short and sweet.

Evening 29th: Nap from 1800 to 1830. Woke up by alarm, easy to get up. Had plenty of energy and could do whatever I needed to do.

Morning 30th: Again chatting with my friend but tonight I went to bed on time, or almost. At 0005, I set the alarm for 0500.

And woke up at 0500. It was slightly hard but not too hard. Actually the alarm went into automatic snooze by the time I woke up so I got up only at 0508. But it wasn't very hard even before.

I need a deadman's switch and an alarm that can be set by it. Or maybe I can use Tasker on my Android phone to create something close. Then I'd sleep exactly 4.5 hours, taking falling asleep time in account.

Energy levels: 99.5%
Body: Very slightly tired. (Might be because of the cold)
Health: Cold symptoms persisting, though less than yesterday.
Mood: Creative

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Biphasic sleep log - Day 67 - 28th March

Back on the biphasic, and it feels so good!

Evening 28th: My day was fine, no issues with sleep dep even though I had only about 5 hours of sleep.

Nap was about standard. From 1805 to 1827. Fell asleep quickly and woke up 3 minutes before the alarm naturally. I was surprised to see 1827 on the clock as it didn't feel like I had slept that long. I had been out like a light.

But energy levels after the nap were very good, and I could do all kinds of stuff that I wanted to do.

Morning 29th: About my sleeping time, I was chatting with a friend about some important stuff so I let it delay a little. Finally, I went to bed at 0025 with alarm set for 0500. That left only 5 minutes for falling asleep but with the biphasic sleep pattern pretty established by now, I can play fast and loose with that transition time.

I did fall asleep in about 5 minutes and woke up by the alarm at 0500. It did take some rubbing of the eyes to get to awake state but it wasn't really hard.

I still have the cold symptoms but other than that body feels fine, including the left shoulder now.

Energy levels: 100%
Body: Fine
Health: Cold symptoms
Mood: Happy

The happiness stems from being back on the biphasic wagon and also from other things going around in my life.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Ustad Faiz ki Ghazal

Just something from Ustad Faiz Ahmed Faiz since I am in a shayrana mood today.

अब ये होगा शायद अपनी आग में खुद जल जाएँगे
तुम से दूर बहुत रह कर भी क्या पाया क्या पाएँगे

दुख भी सच्चे सुख भी सच्चे फिर भी तेरी चाहत में
हम ने कितने धोखे खाए कितने धोखे खाएँगे

कल के दुख भी कौन से बाक़ी आज के दुख भी कै दिन के
जैसे दिन पहले काटे थे ये दिन भी कट जाएँगे

And my favourite: 

अक़्ल पे हम को नाज़ बहुत था लेकिन ये कब सोचा था
इश्क़ के हाथों ये भी होगा लोग हमें समझाएँगे 

[The image is another sher by Faiz.]

Biphasic sleep log - Day 66 - 27th March

Another monophasic day that made me miss my biphasic routine. I got home about 2120 and after tending to the hunger I had about 90 minutes to do what I want. But I had a very exciting project I wanted to work on and didn't want to waste 6 hours sleeping. I wasn't very sleepy either although I knew I could sleep whenever I wanted.

Finally I went to bed at 0010 and set the alarm for 0500. I know it was again less than the required 6 hours for a sick man but I wanted breakfast in the morning. Also, I like the feeling of not having to rush to get ready right as I wake up.

At this point I also remembered that I haven't really had a seriously sleep deprived day since I adapted to the biphasic routine. I have had days when I felt sleepy or tired but the days when sleep dep is distracting and I can't work because of it, I haven't had those.

So I took the chance on 5 hours of sleep.

Fell asleep quickly as soon I consciously stopped thinking about my project.

Woke up at 0500 by the alarm and thought about whether I wanted to get up or sleep another hour that I had. The funny thing is this thinking was in the slide-back phase. I decided to stay up.

Energy levels: 100%
Body: Tired. Left shoulder hurting since Sat morning and don't know what from.
Health: Sick with cold. Coughing and sneezing.
Mood: Very creative. I actually planned stuff for my project and also wrote some shers in the train to work.

Ipad2 - Anything worth buying is worth queuing for?

Somebody I work with just shared that they queued up for a couple of hours to buy the new ipad2. I mean how stupid can you get? This same person wouldn't be able to use all the features even of an ipad and wouldn't know what they are missing even after paying a premium for the brand name.

It sometimes pisses me off and sometimes amuses me how people buy Apple's iCrap simply because it's considered the cool thing to possess. They don't have the need for it and certainly not the knowledge to make an informed decision but just the craving to be seen with the "cool" gadgets. LOL.

And Apple controls them like sheep. Advertising heavily for each product, carefully planning a staggered release of features, and reducing the number of devices released each cycle, Apple is able to not only make they buy this crap but also feel privileged to waste money on it.

And now some ipad jokes to amuse you.

Steve, I’ma let you finish, but Moses had the greatest tablet announcement of all time.

Apple is makin a new version iPad with bells on it,they say its for the christmas period…

Biphasic sleep log - Day 65 - 26th March

I know I am posting it late but it was not hard to remember.

At 0053 when I was going to bed I planned to leave the alarm set for 0600 and get about 5 hours of sleep. I know that's not enough considering I was on the sick list but as you know I need time to finish all the stuff I need to do.

But even at 0053, my alarm app dashboard was showing "Next alarm in 04:07 hours". That bewildered me, until I remembered that in 7 minutes it'd push the time one hour ahead automatically for British Summer Time adjustment. So I set the alarm to 0700 to get 5 hours of sleep.

And woke up by the alarm and got up easily. Honestly, it felt like 5 hours of biphasic quality sleep. In the day there was no sleep dep, but I did feel tired. Some of them, or most of that, would have to be attributed to my activities. It was an active day involving lots of standing, almost all day.

But still I didn't suddenly nod off or fall down around nap time. I just continued up to 2120 (getting home time), didn't even feel sleepy in the train.

Even after getting home I cooked and ate and was active on the laptop after that.

So, I think even the monophasic days in-between biphasic days are better than normal monophasic days.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Baba Ke Glamorous Bhakt

Baba ko to aap log jaante hi hain. Baba ka darbar laga hua hai. Baba pravchan kar chuke hain. Bhakt log darshan ko aa rahe hain..koi sirf aashirvad lene aata hai to koi apni samasya lekar matlab se aata hai. Baba sabka ud_dhaar karte hain.

Sanyasin 1: Baba, Rakhi aayi hai.

Baba: Balike, tum to jaanti ho hamare ashram mein sirf yahi ek tyohaar hai jiska naam lena verjit hai. Valentine's day ki baat karo, Diwali ka naam lo, Rakhi ko chhod do.

Sanyasin 1: Nahin baba, Rakhi Sawant.

Baba ka aasan dol jaata hai.

Baba: Balikao, saare joote-chappal chhupa do, phir usko baad unko bulaao.

Sanyasin 2: Kyon baba, ye kya joote churati hain?

Baba: Arre hamein churaane ki nahin, chalaane ki chinta hai, balike. Tumhe kya lagta hai ye apne talent se famous hui hai?

Rakhi Sawant Enters.

Rakhi: Baba ki jai ho. Baba aap mahaan hain. Aap kamaal hain. Aap ke jaisa koi nahin, meri mummy bhi kehti hai...

Baba: Balike, ijjat dekar ijjat utaarne waale tumhare style se hum parichit hai..mudde ki baat par aao..

Rakhi: Baba, mera last show ekdum flop ho gaya, baba. Main kya karoon mera talent kum hota jaa raha hai, baba, kuchh upaay bataa_iye na.

Baba: Hmmm..Google ki sharan mein jaao. Search karo - "Delhi Police Online Training", jitni nayi aur karaari gaaliyan milengi sab tumhare agle reality show me kaam aagyengi.

Rakhi: Wah baba, aap to kamaal hain. Lekin ek aur problem hai baba.

Baba: Abhi aur bhi? Khair bolo.

Rakhi: Baba, naye show ke liye naya producer bhi chahiye.

Baba: Haan ye to samasya hai, jisne tumhen ek baar dekh liya wo to dobara haath lagayega nahin.

Rakhi (hurt): Baba!?

Baba: Baba se nakhra mat karo, baalike, baba tumhari aukaat jaante hain. Hmmm, aisa karo, Bollywood ke Apple store mein jao aur aisa customer search karo jisne pichchhle ek saal mein iPod, iPad aur iPhone teeno ko naya version khareeda ho. Usse zyada akal ka andha aur neeyat ka ganda banda tumhen nahin milega. Wohi tumhara show produce karega.

Rakhi: Wah baba, you are too good. Baba ki jai..

Sanyasin 1: Android waale baba ki...

Bhakt crowd: JAI!!

Baba: Jai-jaikar chhodo balike, aur aashram ka shuddhikaran karo.

Sanyasin 1 and 2: Jee baba!

Baba starts bhajan..."Ramchandra keh gaye siya se, aisa kalyug aayega..hans chugega daana dunka, hans chugega dana dunka, kauwa moti khaayega...he ji re..."

Sanyasins join in: "hans chugega daana dunka, kauwa moti khayega..."

Baba (still singing):
suno siya kaljug mein, kaala dhan aur kaale man honge
kaale man honge
chor uchchakke nagar seth
aur prabhu bhakt nirdhan honge
nirdhan honge
jo hoga lobhi aur bhogi
jo hoga lobhi aur bhogi
wo jogi kehlayega
hans chugega dana dunka
hans chugega dana dunka
kauwa moti khayega

Crowd joins the sanyasins in chorus: "hans chugega daana dunka, kauwa moti khayega..."

Sanyasin 1: Baba, Mallika aayi hain.

Baba: Mallika_on ka raaj chala gaya balike, ab to Miss India_on ka raaj hai.

Sanyasin giggles: Nahin baba, Mallika Sherawat. Then to Sanyasin 2 in a whisper, "Baba ka general knowledge poor nahin hai?"

Sanaysin 2 (in whisper): General knowledge ki baat nahin, baba ka taste better hai.

Baba: Arre aaj subah-subah kiska munh dekh liya.

Sanyasin 2: Baba, aaj to jab aap uthe to TV par Clinton ka interview aa raha tha...

Baba: Uff, tabhi to...khair bulao inhen bhi.

Mallika Sherawat enter amidst whistles from male bhakts.

Mallika touches Baba's knee: Baba ki jai ho.

Baba: Arre hamein kya Emraan Hashmi samjhaa hai baalike, wahin se baat karo.

Mallika (pouting):!

Baba: Balike, yahi tumhara ekmatra talent hai, isse vyarth kharch na karo. Kaho kya samasya hai? 

Mallika: Baba, meri to kai problems hain?

Baba: Ek-ek karke pitaara kholo. 

Mallika: Baba, mere dress designer ko koi nayi inspiration nahin aati, main heroine hoon, mujhe nayi nayi glamorous dresses mein dikhna zaroori hai. 

Baba: Balike, uska qasoor nahin hai. Jitne chhote kapde tum pehanti ho usme usne jitnee variety dee hai wo kamaal hai, isse zyada chhote karega toh ander ho jayega. 

Mallika: Oh, baba, aap bhi bas...baba, mere producer bhi bade limited ho gaye hain. Sab ghuma-phira ke wohi limited scene dete hain...kissing-dance, kissing-dance isse aage kuchh bhi nahin. (pouts)

Baba: Isse aage badhega to public ke joote khayega. 

Mallika: Toh main kya karoon, Baba?

Baba: Bollywood reet sada chali aayi, bhaanti-bhaanti se gund phailaai. Jiski film mein line khatam ho jaati hai wo music video se gund phailaata hai. Tum bhi music video banaao. 

Mallika: Wah, baba, what a great idea! 

Baba starts singing: 
mandir soona soona hoga
bhari rahengi madhushaala madhushaala
pita ke sang sang bhari sabha mein
nachengi ghar ki baala ghar ki baala
kaisa kanya daan pita hi
kaisa kanya daan pita hi
kanya ka dhan khaayega
hans chugega dana dunka
hans chugega dana dunka
kauwa moti khayega

Sanyasins join in the chorus: "hans chugega dana dunka, hans chugega dana dunka, kauwa moti khayega"

Baba: "he ji re he ji re he"

Mallika: Baba, baba, bas ek aur last problem. 

Baba: Bako. Haan, matlab bolo, kanya. 

Mallika: Baba, meri popularity badhaane ke liye kya karoon, taaki main phir se number 1 bun jaaoon?

Baba: Android per apne dance ki app launch karwao, popularity raatoN-raat badh jaayegi. 

Mallika: Wah baba, you are great! Baba ki jai...

Sayasins: "Android waale baba ki..."

Bhakt crowd: "JAI!!"

[Bhakt toh aur bhi hain par samay seemit hai..aaj itna hi.]

Biphasic sleep log - Day 64 - 25 March

I am going to write this in one go since this was a monophasic night.

Because of the social engagement I had no chance to get a nap. But I had no problems. Energy levels were fine and so was the mood. Only thing wrong was health. Despite my efforts I still had the sore throat and also had some cough today.

I got home about midnight and after wrapping up stuff that needed to be done, slept at 0100, with no alarm set. Since I was planning to sleep in monophasic and also had the cold symptoms, there was no sense in regulating the sleep. When I get cold I just follow PureDoxyK's advice that you should take as much sleep as you can get.

I recall turning the alarm off by solving a 4-dot CAPTCHA this morning but that's not possible as I had turned the application off completely.

I woke up with a headache around 0711. I remember waking up in the night once or twice, but I didn't make any effort to note the time. But after 0500 it took an effort to continue sleeping. Despite the cold-headache I know that the quality of the sleep was very good. Other than the cold symptoms, mind was clear and mood was actually creative as in wanting to write blog posts and play guitar. Of course, I didn't do any of it because physically I felt tired because of the cold.

Then I took in some more sleep between 1200 and 1400. About 90 minutes worth. That felt good as well and fixed the headache. Or Vicks Vaporub might have had something to do with it.

I count the cold as a good thing since it gives us an opportunity to observe if the biphasic pattern has any negative impact on the immunity. Also, we will observe what's the pattern when I try to go back to biphasic after these few days of monophasic during the cold. 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Hold the elevavator, please!

You know this feeling when you arrive at work, you have been walking fast from the station or bus stop to make it in time, you run up the steps, you go through doors like you are running a hurdle race, and you get to the elevatorbank and.....and you stop! After all the urgency and speed, you are obliged to cool your heels in that corridor after you press the lift button! What an anticlimax!

Happens to me every morning!

But not this morning!

As soon as I rounded the last corner I saw one lift ready to go up, the doors just closing. At the precise moment when I saw them the doors were about 50% closed. I covered the remaining distance in 2 swift steps and shoved my hand between the double doors that were now 75% closed and still closing. As soon as my arm passed through doors..the doors kept closing! 

Have you seen those Ninja movies where the Ninja takes out his long samurai sword and chops down in smooth, fluid motion? I did that...just without the sword and upwards instead of down. The doors, even though they were 90% closed now, arrested their progress and opened back! Phew, right?

As I entered the lift with the air of a world-champion Samurai, I realized to my horror that there was somebody in the lift! The closing doors had hidden this lady from my view who was a silent witness to my shenanighans with the lift doors with wide eyes! 

I took out my earphones and apologized, "I am sorry. I hope I didn't scare you." 

She started laughing, "No, no, it's ok. But you are very brave to push your arm in like that!" 

"Oh," I replied non-chalantly, "I know where the sensors are now."

You see, just last Friday one of my colleagues had told me where the sensors are between the lift doors, and by chopping upwards I had been able to intercept the beam and stop the doors closing. 

She started laughing. We had to ride a few floors together and I kept my embarassed silence, but she could not stop laughing. Actually now that I think back on it, I can't stop smiling either. This one will be my most embarassing lift moment for quite a while even though I have others. 

Have you ever done anything as silly as that? 

Biphasic sleep log - Day 63 - 24th March

Evening 24th: As expected I did not get an evening nap. I was fine with energy levels until I got home about 1945. Then they got lower.

Here I should mention what's almost elementary if you think about it. On monophasic days, normal or in-betwee biphasic days, when I get home, I get progressively more tired. Even if I use the hours till midnight then sleep, I do that in spite of the tiredness. On biphasic days, I do get sleepy around nap time, but only very close to the nap time. Then after nap to core is a fresh day with full energy usually, and I get sleepy close to the core start time.

Tonight I felt that progressively tired feeling. So much so that I decided to call it a day around 2230.

Morning 25th: Went to bed at 2230 with an alarm set for 0600. The idea was to get 7.5 hours of sleep to be ready for a long, nap-less day ahead. But I knew I wouldn't sleep that long even without the alarm.

What I wasn't ready for, was to wake up at 0200. I was not only awake but felt like I could get up and start the day. Of course, I didn't. Starting a day that early would have meant disaster in the evening.

Then I woke up at 0313. Then again about 0408. Each time I felt the same, that I had had a good night's sleep.

Finally I did wake up at 0500. Yes, an hour before the alarm time.

I think my sleep cycle has shrunk from the 90 minute to somewhere around 60 minutes. Also, the REM content in each sleep cycle is more. Even at 2 am after 3.5 hours of sleep I felt great, well-relaxed and ready to handle a day. And at 5 am I felt like I could wrestle a lion, maybe even 2 if they were on monophasic sleep schedule!

Energy levels: 100%
Body: Fine
Mood: Weekend-Creative (relaxed, not hassled, ready to do some creative things).

I did have light tea in breakfast but only to avoid warm milk, I didn't need tea or anything, I was fully awake.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Interesting story about quicksand

I just came across it and liked it. Short and nice to read with a happy ending.

Biphasic sleep log - Day 62 - 23rd March

Evening 23th: I had plans to get an early nap before I had to get ready for my guitar class but the British Rail System screwed that up. Then because of the trains crap, there were no taxi's so I had to walk home. Good for the health, but I didn't really have time to spare today.

So I got home at 1810 and decided to take the nap from 1820. I had been feeling the sleepiness build up and needed to be in top condition for my guitar lesson. I was in an active frame of mind because of the walk (and the Cliffs of Dover I had been listening to while walking) but still I could fall asleep easily.

And also wake up at 1850 by the alarm. I got up and did my stuff before going to the class. Energy levels were good, I had a great class and no drop in my comprehension or creativity because of the irregular nap.

Morning 24th: Went to bed at 2350 last night and didn't move the alarm from 0430. Sleep did follow quite easily, within the first 10 minutes most likely.

woke up at 0430 by the alarm, turned it off and then slept on. Not deliberately, but I think there's a level of awakeness where I can solve the CAPTCHA to turn off the alarm but am not yet awake enough to make sensible, pragmatic decisions. This is like quicksand where it's so easy to slide under if you are not very, very careful about it.

So I actually woke up at 0521.

Energy Levels: 100%
Body: Slightly tired in the legs.
Health: Small sign of sore throat.
Mood: Fantastic.

Today and tomorrow I won't get time for a nap due to social engagements and then Sunday the same story because of my course. So, next 4 days I'll be more or less monophasic especially if I start getting a cold.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Guitar Hero 3

I promised to tell you this. Way back in 2010 (hehe, yes it seems like long ago) when I bought a guitar and started to try and learn it, I found that it was really, really hard work. In the beginning I got no pleasure out of it, and the whole thing about forming chords and then changing chords was so hard it was frustrating.

The biggest fear when learning guitar, for me, was that I might stop before I get any good at it. The fear of giving up, led to desperation and I tried to think of any way that I could keep up my motivation. I already had a Nintendo Wii, so the thought came to me that I might benefit by playing the Guitar Hero game on it. Guitar Hero, for those who don't know, is a game that you play with a plastic guitar. The Wii remote is plugged into the guitar and then you "play" the guitar using the unique buttons with both hands. So, you see stuff happening in vivid graphic detail on the screen and you play the guitar within that tune. Being a video game it has difficulty levels of Easy, Medium, Hard, Expert and other such concepts.

My thinking was that playing Guitar Hero will develop some of that hand dexterity that I need for playing real guitar as well as develop my timing and rhythm.  Also, with the screen graphics and playing with a full on-screen band will give me the quick gratification that real guitar could not.

As it happened, I played it exactly 2 times, in the same session and then the guitar joined the rest of the things that just collect dust in my room after I buy them.

Thankfully, I didn't give up on the real guitar and did learn a little bit. As you know I am still learning it, and despite my slow progress (because of the actual practice time I put in) I am learning more and more every week.

Then when I went crazy for Cliffs of Dover recently about 2 weeks ago I had more confidence than when I started. But still I know that Cliffs of Dover would be a hard song for me to play on guitar. So, I thought why don't we play it on Guitar Hero.

That's when I realized something bad about Guitar Hero.

Being a software engineer, I am very familiar with software versions. And to me, greater number means more functionality. Well, not in Guitar Hero. I had bought the latest version Guitar Hero 5 thinking this would include everything up that version. Well, not so. Cliffs of Dover is available in Guitar Hero 3 but not any other versions. I tried to find if I could download it to my Wii, but couldn't find it in the online catalogs.

So, being the kind of obsessive person I am, I just went to and bought Guitar Hero 3.

It arrived 2 days ago. I opened it as soon as I saw it and tried to find the song. I couldn't find it. :( The problem is that even on Guitar Hero it's an Expert level song, so I think I'll have to work my way through other easier songs in order to unlock it. That means investing a lot of time to get to the Expert (4th and highest) level. I don't see that happening.

If I am going to invest that much time in unlocking that song, I might as well invest that time on my electric guitar. By the time I learn that song on the real guitar, it'd unlock loads of real songs for me in the process. So, why not?

I might play Guitar Hero, but mostly for fun when I am bored with other things.

So that's my story of trying to be a Guitar Hero. It's not finished yet...

Baba Ke VIP Bhakt

Scene: Baba Ka Darbar. Bhakt log are sitting. Two cute sanyasins flanking baba on either side assisting as bhakts come one by one and narrate their problems.

Sanyasin 1: Baba Sah Rukh Khan aaye hain aapki sharan mein.

Baba: Oh, Junior Amitab Bachchan? Haan, haan, bulao.

SRK: B…b..baba, p...p…p..pranam!

Baba: Abe pranaam bhi kistoN mein karega? Kabhi to passenger chhod kar express pakad liya kar.

SRK: B…b…baba, main samjha nahin.

Baba: Arre itna samajhdar hota toh kya Asoka jaisi filmein banata phirta? Chal khair kya samasya hai?

SRK: B..b..baba, meri filmein chal nahin rahi hain kuchh upaay batayein kaisi film banaoon?

Baba: Abe, Don ki copy tune kallee, Devdas tune bana lee, ab Maine Pyar Kiya ki copy kal_ley.

SRK: B..b..baba, ye aap kaise bol rahehain?

Sanyasin1: Baba ko Akshya Kumar syndrome hai.

Sanyasin2: Baba jab aavesh mein aa jaate hain toh Dilli-6 ki bhaasha mein baat karne lagte hain.

SRK:. Oh, par B…b…b…aba, main kya karoon jo meri film hit ho jaaye. Meri 4 filmein pit chuki hain.

Baba: Arre mere slow motion ke Dilip Kumar, jab tu 30 second ke dialogue ko ghaseet-ghaseet ke, ghaseet-ghaseet ke 3 minute mein bolega to public to bore ho hi jayegi na? Aur kaam nahin hai kya logoN ko?

SRK: T…t…t..toh kya karoon, Baba. Main aapki Sharan mein aaya hoon.

Baba: Theek hai. Apne Android phone mein ek app download kar…

SRK: Ba….ba, Android phone toh hai nahin.

Baba shouts: Arre bahar nikalo isko!

Two mustande sanyasi grab SRK by the arms.

SRK screams: Khareed loonga, baba, khareed loonga!

Baba signals. The sanyasi’s leave SRK.

Baba: App download kar, it’s called “Nana Patekar Speech Therapy.” Practice kar, speed level mein aa jayegi, phir movie bana aur aish kar.

SRK: J..j…jai ho baba ki!

Sanyasin1 & 2: Android wale baba ki…
Bhakt crowd: JAI!

Sanyasin 1: Baba, Amit ji aaye hain.

Baba: Haan bulao lamboo ko. Haan bhai, aa jao, wo naariyal ka ped hai dekho sir na lage, bachaakar aa jao.

AB(Read this in Kuldeep Dubey version of AB): Baba! Baba ki jai ho. Baba meri madad karein. Main badi mushkil mein hoon, baba. Meri popularity kam hoti ja rahi hai, koi film mein nahin le raha, baba.

Baba: Arre mere chalte phirte khajoor ke ped, pehle to tumne Kaun Banega Crorepati, Kaun Banega Crorepati kehte kehte khud apne aap ko hi crorepati bana liya aur duniya ko choona laga diya..phir tumne Abhishek ko Bharat ki bholi-bhaali janta par chhod diya…usko baad 70 logoN ke sapno ki rani Aishwarya ko ghar le gayi..kitne dil tod diye..aur ab aaye ho ki baba log pooch nahin rahe hain, hyen?

AB: Baba, wo to bas ho gaya, buri sohbat mein pad gaya tha, baba. Aap ki sharan mein aaya hoon, baba, kuchh madad keejiye. Ab aap hi uddhaar kar sakte hain.

Baba: Hmmm…to sun. Saat somvaar subah saat baje Google ke blog par comment likh. Likh ke tu filmi duniya se sanyaas le raha hai…

AB: Baba?!

Baba: Shaant! Aathwein somwaar baba khud comment karenge ki tu sanyaas mat le, filmi duniya ko teri zaroorat hai. Tab to cancel kar dena. Baba ka haath tere sar par aa jayega, popularity apne aap badh jayegi.

AB: Baba! Baba aap mahaan hain! Baba ki jai…

Sanyasin 1 & 2: Android wale baba ki….

Bhakt crowd: JAI!!

Biphasic sleep log - Day 61 - 22nd March

Evening 22nd: I felt a bit of tiredness and sleepiness around 2 PM, but thought it might be from hunger. It was. After eating, it felt much better, no tiredness. No yawning.

Got home about 1725. Yes, it is between both my train times of reaching at 1715 or 1740. It's easy to explain though, today I went to a music shop from the station to buy some picks. :)

Once I change and sit on the bed checking email and stuff, I do start feeling quite sleepy. But I just relaxed until it was time.

So started the nap about 1800 with alarm set for 1830 as usual. I fell asleep very easily and did wake up by the alarm. I distinctly remember solving the captcha and turning the alarm off but then somehow I went back to sleep. The major problem is that when I am sleepy all my logic is skewed. So I can convince myself to go back to sleep using any argument that seems rational at the time.

Anyhow, I woke up by the ringing phone at 1903. And since phone call gets priority I was able to get up easily. The point to note here is that even though I had overslept my nap I wasn't groggy or anything. My party on the other end didn't guess that I had been asleep.

Afterwards also, I felt benefitted by the extra sleep if anything.

Morning 23rd: Went to bed at 0000 last night. Next time I looked at the time it was 0313. If I had wanted to get up then it'd be the same difficulty level as the morning. But as I am not going to monkey with the sleep time without a plan, I just went back to sleep.

Then got up by the alarm at 0430. Same difficulty, lots of rubbing of the eyes, but I got up. Felt fine.

Energy Levels: 98% which moved up to 100% after light tea in breakfast.
Body: Tension in shoulders otherwise good.
Mood: Fantastic!

I was able to practice a little bit of guitar in the time left after breakfast. And mood was creative also as I was thinking of a blog post at the station.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Akbar-Birbal - Words Can Kill

A well-known astrologer and palm-reader came to Agra and such was his fame that the Emperor Akbar himself called him to his court.

The palmist looked at Akbar's hand and looked serious. Then he told the Emperor, "Maharaj, you will suffer the separation of all your family members and relatives, they will all die in front of your eyes."

This, understandably, made the emperor very angry. He ordered the Pandit to be put in jail.

As usual, the refuge of the downtrodden, besaharon ka sahara, was Birbal. The Pandit asked to see Birbal in prison and when he came he poured his troubles into his sympathetic ear.

Birbal understood the problem. He whispered a plan into the Pandit's ear.

The next morning, the Pandit sent a request to see the Emperor one more time, saying he suspected he had made a mistake and must be given a chance to confirm or refute his earlier prediction.

Akbar welcomed this opportunity to rid himself of the dark shadow of this Pandit's ominous prediction and called the Pandit to his court.

This time, after carefully examining the powerful ruler's hand, the Pandit looked up and delivered his address thus, "Your Majesty, I did indeed make a big mistake. Your palm is in fact the palm of an extremely fortunate and privileged man. You are such a kind and just emperor that even the Gods want you to continue to rule this country for decades to come! I can clearly see it in your hand that you will have a long and healthy life. You will live so long that none in your friends, family or relatives will be able to equal that! You will have the longest life of all of them! May the Gods bless Your Majesty with years and years of happiness in your long, unsurpassed life!"

The Emperor was happy to hear the "true and correct" prediction and rewarded the Pandit handsomely.

Moral of the story?  When it's your head on the line, choose your words carefully!

Biphasic sleep log - Day 60 - 21st March

So we complete 2 months. It's a momentous day! :)

Evening 21st: The day went fine but I felt increasingly tired after 1600. A little sleepy on the train back.

I had a parcel waiting for me, the DVD of Guitar Hero 3. (Long story why I bought it when I already had Guitar Hero 5, maybe in another post). So, I could sleep without checking it out first. Which I did, and managed to get to bed at 1802.

Left the alarm set for 1830 and went for the nap. I did fall asleep in the alloted 8 minutes but woke up at about 1818. It felt quite natural and I could have gotten up without difficulty but I was worried that it might make me tired soon afterwards.

So, I tried to sleep a little more, had trouble sleep with all my devices doing *ding*s and *dang*s from time to time and also expecting to the alarm to go off any time.

Finally I got about half an hours sleep and woke up just before 1900. It was good sleep.

Morning 22nd: I didn't feel any dip in the energy levels right up to midnight. I had had a busy evening what with Second Life and phone so I wasn't really ready to sleep yet but still did.

Slept at midnight but still left the alarm set for 0430. I figured I'd fall asleep in 10 minutes or less and that could come out of the unevenness of the sleep cycles.

As it happened, I woke up two minutes before the alarm and it was easy to prop up and open the laptop. As I was checking email I happened to notice the time in the system tray - 0302! Wha..?!

I don't know why I felt it was 2 minutes less than my alarm time! Anyway, I could very easily have gotten up then, but I have the fear that I might feel tired in the day and I have lots of work these days.

So I slept more, it was easy to silde back into sleep, and then woke up by the alarm at 0430. Easy to get up today, not like turning the switch on but still easier than the usual mornings.

Energy levels: 95%
Body: A little tired
Mood: Bloggative (creative but focused on blogging.)

I am yawning in office today but a contributing factor to that would be the warm milk I had in breakfast. I will have to re-think that, maybe replace it with juice or even light tea.

I have decided to carry on with the sleep log even past the second month even though we now know that the experiment is successful. It's more for me than my readers. It probably bores them to death but it keeps me focused on my pattern and collect valuable data. Since it's public I don't miss any days which I might be tempted to do if I kept it in a private documents.

Also, the log makes me blog more, if only to interject a post or two between the sleep log posts.

I have a 2 or 3 week period of in-between jobs time coming on, if that happens, I'd like to try Uberman, just for fun. I'd probably use Everyman 3 to transition. There will be more fun log entries to read if I do Uberman.

Help Caloyelboy in his dilemma

I just finished reading this post by Caloyelboy. And it made me laugh. He's got serious choices that he's contemplating, but it's just the way he phrases things that made me laugh, particularly his vehemence re banks and the way he says "no offence."
Incidently, this is the blog where I first encountered the word "biphasic".

Monday, March 21, 2011

Biphasic sleep log - Day 59 - 20th March

Evening 20th:
Evening nap? There was no nap! As I mentioned before in my summary, the social life and active lifestyle are the things you need to worry about when you do biphasic. Today I was out and about doing stuff that makes dreams come true, so I had no time for sleep. Hehe, I promise I will elaborate on this one day soon. :)

But I felt no dip in energy, no irritability or any other adverse effects. Even in the train coming home I was fine. I was tired from the day, it had been a very demanding day in terms of body, mind and creative juices, but that's about all.

I got home about1920 but of course I couldn't take my nap now.

Morning 21st:
Went to bed at 2330 with alarms set for 0430 and 0600. You see, I wasn't sure how much sleep I'd need after an exhausting day and no nap. So, 0430 was ideal situation and 0600 the failsafe.

As it happened, I did wake up at 0430's alarm ring, and turned off the CAPTCHA in full awake condition, but then I didn't realize when I slid back into sleep.

Woke up by 0600 alarm going off and had to make an effort to get up. Wasn't too bad though.

Energy Levels: 98%
Body: Slighty tired
Mood: Active

Biphasic sleep log - Day 58 - 19th March

Evening 19th:
I was able to do my household chores and have coherent phone conversations despite my tiredness. The naptime came only too quickly.

Today's nap was regulation. After setting the alarm for 1830 at 1803, I was still awake at 1807. So I used my counting down technique and I think it worked. I didn't see the time after that because I was asleep.

Woke up at 1830 by the alarm, got up easily and felt great. Still feeling great past 2100. Core will be 4.5 hours tonight, starting at either midnight or 0100.

Morning 20th:
Went to bed at midnight last night but set the alarm for 0500. You see, I had something on my mind and I knew I'd not fall asleep quickly as I do these days, so I allowed myself half an hour to fall asleep instead of 10 minutes.  As it happened, I got a solution for my problem about 00:08, got up, took me 11 minutes to implement it and then I was back in bed at 00:19. This time I did fall asleep within 15 minutes.

And the morning was glorious! Got up at 0500 by alarm. Not hard to get out of bed. Active immediately.

Energy levels: 100%
Body: Arms still a bit tired, otherwise great.
Mood: Active and Creative.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Biphasic sleep log - Day 57 - 18th March - Breaking the rules

Evening 18th:
For one thing I didn't feel a dip in the energy levels all day. Not even in the evening when I missed my nap.

Because of my evening social engagement I knew I would not be able to get my nap but it was fine. Even playing sports was fine, I didn't drop from sleep deprivation in the middle of running around.

Didn't even feel sleepy in the train home, just tired.

Morning 19th:
I came home quite exhausted last night but even though I was free to go to bed at 2300, I made a superlative effort to stay up till midnight, so as not to mess up my routine completely.

Because I was expecting to be very tired and sore today, and knew that my body needed extra time to recover esp. as I don't play sports usually, I decided to do a limitless monophasic sleep. So went to bed at midnight and turned off all alarms.

Funny thing is, I still woke up at 0537 and could have gotten up but deliberately went back to sleep. I knew I have to be active all day tomorrow so I have only today to recover completely. Woke up again at 0630. Slept some more. Then finally at 0711 I realized that I would have to get up.

So, that's one more change from biphasic. Just as I can fall asleep very quickly, I cannot sleep very late in the morning, even if I have time and physical fatigue. Early rising I'd call a good side-effect.

Actually, I wasn't half as tired or sore as I was expecting to be. In fact, not sore at all, just tired arms. I think stretching before sports, and before going to bed might have helped with that.

About 1100, I did feel sleepy again, so took some more freestyle sleep. It was less than 2 hours and quite restful.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Biphasic sleep Log - Day 56 - 17th March 2011

Evening 17th March:
For one thing, I was not run down today even by leaving time. In the train I do get a little sedate mostly because of the chance to relax and not being able to do anything very active anyway. Today I could work on something constructive in the train if I had a keyboard and an internet connection, I was that awake.

Got home about 1715, and tried the nap from 1740. For some reason I left the alarm set for 1830. I think since my back was still hurting a bit, I wanted to try some extra rest. Also I wanted to see if I would wake up naturally after 20 minutes.

I woke up at 2121. Quite annoyed. I don't know what happened in-between, don't even remember turning the alarm off. I had been asleep for about 3 hours and it annoyed me that I had wasted the time. Back was still hurting, but I could have hardly expected that to be normal so quickly.

Then question was when and how long to do the core sleep. I have realized by now that, regardless of how much core sleep I get, if I wake up too early I would feel sleepy in the evening. And Friday evening I have a social engagement that would require me to have both an active mind and an agile body. (Don't let you mind wander, I am talking about sporting activity!)

I could even have slept at my normal time at 2345 but I had at least some stuff I needed to do before going back to bed.

I set up my Wii again, means I had to install new batteries into the remotes and the balance board. Took a Wii Fit test and found that I had gained 7 pounds since last test 560 something days ago! That to me spells 7 pounds overweight. So, now I will be trying to shake off that extra weight while still keeping my biphasic routine over the next couple of months. This will get interesting!

Morning 18th:
Last night went to bed at 0122, with two alarms one for 3 hours later at 0430 and one for 4.5 hours later at 0600. Yes, I realize I left only 8 minutes for me to fall asleep. But I have gotten so good at it, I could do it with my eyes closed! (See, what I did there? LOL. I slay myself!)

And I did fall asleep in under 8 minutes.

Then I woke up at 0530 in the morning. I think I turned off the 0430 alarm. Considering I had 4 hours of sleep, again I have to conclude that I am no longer adhering to the 1.5 hour sleep cycles.

It was not too hard to get up and out of the bed. Since I leave late on Friday, I had two hours to get ready as well as do any anything else I wanted. I fit quite a few things in that little time.

One of them was to play a match tennis on Wii. I know it's not a record in personal fitness, but I am trying to ease myself into it. The biggest problem I have with fitness stuff is that it bores me to death. I started running properly when I found audiobooks. Now, I am trying to ease myself in and start a simple, entertaining regime of fitness stuff that I could do every day. Since weather has been getting better, I am hoping to start my running routine soon as well.

I am actually glad of my horrific results on the Wii Fit test last night. If it were already perfect, what would I work towards?

Energy levels = 100%
Body = Fine except residual pain in the back
Mood = Mix of contructive and bored (Friday mornings are like that. I am looking forward to the evening though.)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Cliffs of Dover

I came across this little instrumental piece when I started learning to play guitar. It was in the compilation of "Top 100 all time great solo guitar songs". It's by Eric Johnson. There are no words in it, just guitar and other instruments. And it's such an uplifting piece. I loved it from the first time I heard it! This morning I listening to it in a manual loop (by pressing Previous every time). I plan to do that this evening as well.

It's slightly longer than 3 minutes in total, but there's one riff that's repeated several times in different ways (you'll know it when you hear it) and it's just breathtakingly amazing!

The name Cliffs of Dover is a reference to the White Cliffs of Dover (Wikipedia Link) that are supposed to be very beautiful. They are situated in England in a county called Kent. Since I live in Kent, the piece also has a "homey" touch for me!

The only downside for me for this song is that it's quite fast and involved and it'll take me quite some time before I can play it myself on the guitar. But it's something to shoot for!

Also, Wikipedia mentions that it's part of Guitar Hero as well, and I have Guitar Hero so I am going to try and find it. Maybe I can play it there and who knows it might give me the motivation to tackle it on real guitar soon!

Here is a video, listen to the song yourself. 

Tickets, please?

Every Monday, I buy a weekly ticket to London in order to get to work. Every day the ticket is checked, at least twice, usually 3 times. First checking is in the train, when a ticket inspector walks by and asks,

"Tickets, please?"

Without pausing the movie on my tablet, I reach into my pocket, pull out the 3-part ticket folder, open it, and hold it for him to check and nod.

"Thank you" he walks on by.

Since I sit in First Class I can be sure to be checked every day without fail.

Then I come into the station and there is a long line of ticket checkers, about 5-6 on either side of the exiting passengers. Again, I reach into my pocket, open the folder, and let them see it as I walk by. Two or three of them look at it while the others are distracted or busy doing something else.

Now, here's the twist. As I said, it's a 3-part folder. One display window contains a photocard with my photo and number on it. Second window contains a weekly ticket, that's related to the photocard by the number. The weekly ticket changes every week, the photocard stays the same. Every week when I buy a new ticket I place it in the display window.

But one week, I didn't!

Instead I placed it in my wallet and travelled like that next morning. I expected to be challenged by the first ticket checker I met. Here's what happened:

"Tickets, please!"

No pause. Show ticket.

"Thank you!"

Jerking my head up staring at the back of his head, then at my ticket! Yes, it is the old ticket!

Then at the station, same thing, 3 inspectors look at the ticket, 2 of them nod. I turn to look back at them with disbelief. I should mention that the end date of the ticket is largest, most centrally located, highly visible text on the ticket.

This continues for 4 days. On the fourth day, Friday afternoon, I am the only one in the First Class compartment, the ticket inspector comes up,

"Can I see your ticket, please?"

No pause, show the ticket.

"Thank you."

I went back to my movie. I was used to this now.

Two seconds later, the ticket inspector comes back, "Can I see that ticket again, please?"

As he takes it and starts scrutinising it, I know the jig is up. I take my current ticket out of the wallet and place it on the table.

Also, this ticket inspector had never checked my "invalid" ticket so far.

It took 4 days and 40 ticket inspectors to catch one invalid ticket. How many ticket inspectors do you think it'll take to change a lightbulb?

Biphasic sleep log - Day 55 - 16th March - Back on the Wagon

One stupid thing I did today was to ride a bike simulator in an office event. It would have been ok to do it once, but I did it twice and the second time I did it, it was on the simulator that was almost out of order. In order to get any acceleration you had to twist the damn thing too hard, that usually meant leaning down lower making the sitting posture completely wrong. To top it off, I played a few times on another game meant to test the reflexes. And of course, I didn't stretch before doing any of this, not to mention my complete lack of training recently. Final result: aching back.

Evening 16th: I was home early but kept the nap time to regulation. 1800 to 1830. It was a good nap, quite refreshing. Wasn't really hard to wake up from but not the natural wake-up easy either. If you read my blog regularly, then you already know that Wenzday night is guitar lesson night, so there was no chance of my oversleeping anyway.

Did fine in the guitar class, no clouded mind or distraction from tiredness.

Morning 17th: Last evening was quite fine, started feeling progressively sleepy after 2300. Which meant that I was right on time going to bed.

Slept at 2345, alarm set for 0430. I do remember waking up once, but not completely, and that's more of a topic for my LD log anyway. Woke up by the alarm at 0430 and while trying to pick up the phone, pressed Snooze. So, let the time slide by while I closed my eyes again for 8 minutes, but got up when the alarm rang again.

Here is the report for this morning

Energy levels = 99.9%
Body = Great (Except for "biking" pains)
Mood = Happy

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Random Sher - Wounds of past - No relevance

ऐ नये दोस्त मैं समझूंगा तुझे भी अपना,
पहले माज़ी का कोई ज़ख़्म तो भर जाने दे

Actually there is relevance. I was thinking about my next planned bike (motorbike) trip. And it reminded me of the mark from the wound of the last accident I had on a bike. Hence the sher.

Biphasic log - Day 54 - 15th March

Not a good day, biphasically.

Evening 15th:
I was home on time and tried to nap from 1805 to 1835. But somehow I woke up at 1951. I remember having some interruptions, coming awake and laying down again, and god knows what I did to the alarm. I must have turned it off otherwise it'd keep repeating. Finally I woke up by the door buzzer at 1951.

Felt fine though. Fresh, good energy levels.

Morning 16th:
Got a little late for bed as I hadn't done much SL lately, and I got only about half an hour for it tonight as well. So finally tried to sleep from 0010, with alarm set for 0500.

I remebmer waking up at 0430 looking at the time and then going back to sleep for half an hour. Woke up at 0530. I had felt that it'd be easy to get up even at 0430. At 0530, I had to make an effort.

Energy levels = 95%
Mind clarity = 100%
Body = Tired
Mood = Hassled

Yes, even though I had about 7 hours of sleep in total, I feel hassled and bored not creative or constructive. This is how I used to feel usually on monophasic mornings.

I think I am falling into a biphasic trap now. Here's my analysis. When I go to sleep for monophasic, I feel good and look forward a lovely period of rest and relaxation. In biphasic this period shrinks in duration and hence is not as attractive at first. Then as you train your body to go into REM more and the quality of sleep is much better, you look forward even to a 20 minute nap. Yes, I do! And with the capability to fall into a good, deep sleep instantly, the temptation to roll over and sleep more is 10 times that of the same thing on monophasic. I don't see any other solution than to bring my considerable willpower to bear.

May the force be with me!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Letters in Urdu Shayri

The topic was just on my mind, so I decided to post some good shers on it. The range of emotions in the various sher's is amazing. And as always I am quite fascinated by how cleverly the Urdu shayars have expressed these things.

I have included some shers from the same ghazal where I could, to make the rhyming more meaningful if you haven't heard that ghazal before.

Namabar, qasid and payaami are all names for the letter carrier.

We'll start with my most favourite one:

नामाबर तू ही बता, तूने तो देखे होंगे,
कैसे होते हैं वो खत जिनका जवाब आता है?

कब से हूँ क्या बताऊँ जहाने-खराब में
शबहा-ए हिज्र को भी रखूं घर हिसाब में

[शबहा-ए हिज्र=]

क़ासिद के आते आते खत एक और लिख रखूं,
मैं जानता हूँ जो वो लिखेंगे जवाब में.

दोनो का एक हाल है ये मुद्द्आ हो काश
क्यों फिर वही खत भेज दिया उसने जवाब में

    [मिर्ज़ा ग़ालिब]

ना आते हमें इसमे तक़रार क्या थी
मगर वादा करते तुम्हें आर क्या थी

त_अम्मुल तो था उनको आने में क़ासिद,
मगर ये बता तर्ज़-ए-इनकार क्या थी


मेरे क़ासिद जब तू पहुँचे मेरे दिलदार के आगे
अदब से सर झुकाना हुस्न की सरकार के आगे
ज़बान से गर ना कह पाए आंखों से बयाँ करना
मेरे गम का हर एक क़िस्सा मेरे गम-ख्वार के आगे


क़ासिद पयाँ-ए-शौक़ को देना बहुत ना तूल
कहना फकत ये उन से कि आँखें तरस गईं

खत के पुर्ज़े आए हैं, क़ासिद का सर, तस्वीर-ए-गैर
ये है भेजा उस सितमगर ने मेरे खत का जवाब

क्या जाने लिख दिया क्या उसे इज़तराब में
क़ासिद की लाश आई है खत के जवाब में

वो और वादा वस्ल का क़ासिद नहीं नहीं
सच सच बता ये लफ्ज़ उन्हीं की ज़्बाँ के हैं


नामा गया कोई ना कोई नामाबर गया
तेरी खबर ना आई ज़माना गुज़र गया


मगर लिखवाए कोई उसको खत तो हमसे लिखवाए
हुई सुबह और घर से कान पर रख कर क़लम निकले


जिस पर हमारी आँख ने मोती बिछाए रात भर
भेजा वही काग़ज़ उसे हम ने लिखा कुछ भी नहीं


वो भी शायद रो पड़े वीरान काग़ज़ देख कर
मैने उसे आख़िरी खत में लिखा कुछ भी नहीं


कोई दिन गर ज़िंदगानी और है,
अपने दिल में हम ने ठानी और है,

देके खत मुँह देखता है नामाबर
कुछ तो पैग़ाम-ए-ज़ुबानी और है

Namabar tu hi bata, tune to dekhe honge, 
Kaise hote hain wo khat jinka jawab aata hai?


Kab se hoon kya bata_oon jahane-kharab mein
Shabha-ye hijr kjo bhi rakhoon ghar hisab mein

[Shabha-ye hijr=nights of separation]

Qasid ke aate aate khat ek aur likh rakhoon, 
Main jaanta hoon jo wo likhenge jawaab mein. 

Dono ka ek haal hai ye mudd_aa ho kaash
Kyon phir wahi khat bhej diya usne jawaab mein

[Mirza Ghalib]


Na aate hamein isme taqraar kya thii
Magar vaada karte tumhein aar kya thii

I also love this one:

Ta_ammul to tha unko aane mein qasid, 
Magar ye bata tarz-e-inkaar kya thii?

[Allama Iqbal]
Mere qasid jab tu pahunche mere dildaar ke aage
Adab se sar jhukaanaa husn ki sarkaar ke aage
ZabaaN se gar na keh paaye aa.Nkho.n se bayaa.N karanaa
Mere Gam kaa har ek qissaa mere Gam-Khvaar ke aage

qaasid payaam-e-shauq ko denaa bahut na tuul
kahanaa faqat ye un se ki aa.Nkhe.n taras ga_ii.n

[Jaleel Manakpuri]
Khat ke purze aaye hai.n, qaasid ka sar, tasviir-e-Gair
ye hai bhejaa us sitamgar ne mere Khat kaa javaab


kyaa jaane likh diyaa kyaa use izteraab me.n
qaasid kii laash aa_ii hai Khat ke javaab me.n

vo aur vaadaa vasl kaa qaasid nahii.n nahii.n
sach sach bataa ye lafz unhii.n kii zabaa.N ke hai.n
[Amir Meenai]


naamaa gayaa ko_ii na ko_ii naamaabar gayaa
terii Khabar na aa_ii zamaanaa guzar gayaa

[Seemab Akbarabadi]
This is from the famous ghazal "Hazaron khwahishen aisi"...

Magar likhavaa_e koii usako Khat to hamase likhavaae
Huii subah aur ghar se kaan par rakh kar qalam nikale
` [Mirza Ghalib]

jis par hamaarii aa.Nkh ne motii bichhaye raat bhar
bhejaa vohii kaaGaza use ham ne likhaa kuchh bhii nahii.n
[Bashir Badr]
vo bhii shaayad ro pa.De viiraan kaaGaz dekh kar
mai.n ne use aaKhirii Khat me.n likhaa kuchh bhii nahii.n

[Zahur Nazar]
We'll end with another one of my favourites, I love this ghazal, I think I'll post it in its entirety as a different post:

Ko_ii din ghar zindgaani aur hai,
Apne dil mein hum ne thaani aur hai,

Deke Khat muu.Nh dekhataa hai naamaabar
Kuchh to paiGaam-e-zubaanii aur hai

[Mirza Ghalib]

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