I often ask myself at the end of a year – what I have a learnt this year or rather , and increasingly so, what I have managed not to forget this year. This list of what I have managed not to forget is an interesting and varied list and I want to put it down so I can look back at it later and laugh or cry depending on what I write !

So what I have learnt this year:

I have learnt that my father was right on one count atleast. He used to say that there should be one leader (and that was him) in the house, company or any other organisation. If that is not the case there is confusion. As I see the world becoming multipolar again and US becoming more of a mediator in more cases and enforcer in less cases there is an increased cacophony of opinions around the world. I say cacophony is because a lot of these countries are just speaking for the sake of it and don’t have anything interesting to contribute to the affairs of the world. Its like a little child who starts to speak and its gibberish for some time before any sense comes out. I read, watch and listen in vain for some sense to come out of somewhere to give me hope that a fresh new voice will come from somwhere. But so far my Dad is winning.

I have learnt that money has an interesting way of finding its way around, especially to the people who deserve it the least. Even if all the power of the world is against them receiving the money they will still get it and when they get it the world shrugs off and moves on. Its like this movie I once saw about the life of a bullet, I wish someone would do a movie on the life of a currency note. In some countries around the world, there should be no money (atleast no foreign money) if you believe the sanctions industry, yet money gets there in reasonable amounts. Too many undeserving bankers are still getting pots of money and too many talented artists are still begging for whatever comes their way. In the middle are people like me who are not bankers (so we think that we deserve some bonus), but also are not artists (so we can’t count a 10 sec longer applause as a salary increase). We don’t get the applause or the money. We don’t even get a Xmas party. Yet we are told we should be happy that we have a job. I didn’t sign up for this form of capitalism. Why is the invisible hand not shaking hands with me ?

I have learnt that global problems are actually global at a national/regional level. So my global problem is not your global problem unless you live next door. So environment is a global problem mostly in Europe and some parts of the developed world. Healthcare is a global problem if you read a paper in the US everyday. Poverty and hunger are global problems in big parts of the developing world but don’t really affect the developed world where as Xmas arrives lack of food is hardly one of the worries. If I make one assumption that we are all worried about death then the only global problem facing us is that we and our near/dear ones will all die one day.

I have learnt that it is never about what you want , but more about how you go about getting it. You can get pretty much anything possible if you go about it in the right way. This sort of feeds back into something I remember that the path is more important than the objective.

I have learnt that morality is subjective. One man who sleeps with some women is forced to defend himself over and over again, while one who lied to the world and invaded two countries is probably sharpening his powerpoint skills for his return to the lecture circuit. How is one worse than the other ? Who decides that ? Where is the moral code for humanity which decides what is moral and immoral and why is one more immoral than the other ?

What have I managed not to forget:

I have not forgotten the nights I used to be up doing absolutely nothing. Most of the writing that I go back to has been written in the middle of the night. For me , the nights are the time where abstract comes close to reality and I feel I can touch both at the same time.

Some of the most interesting people (apart from my love) that I have met , I have only met for too short a time. I wish I could meet them again and again. Some I have not even met although sometimes I make myself believe that we have met. They’ve influenced me in more ways than possible and I can never forget.

When I am distressed, I somehow seem to remember my time as a 16 year old. It wasn’t like I was having the time of my life, but it was the innocence, the complete lack of ambition and lack of awareness about the world around. Its a wonderful feeling.

Cynicism is the only way for me to stop myself from going mad !