The Semicolon

Start. Pause. Repeat.


This is an impromptu post. I had not thought about writing this blog post in advance. I would not be terribly disappointed if somehow a power failure robbed me (and you the reader!) of reading the end product of what this post is going to end up to be. Unlike most fascinating news stories breaking headlines, this article will not provide exciting gossip fodder. This post has yet to find its main subject and so will, for now, meander in the sample space of possibilities. Without choosing a headlining topic and thus a route towards a suitable conclusion, all possibilities remain open. Yet, without choosing, none are. That is the beauty of choice.

You enter a carnival where there are a plethora of rides and attractions all enticing you to create wonderful memories for keeping. (You don’t know from where.) Old people above a certain age are of course restricted from entering most rides. As are most toddlers before they reach a certain legal age. Specially-abled persons have also myriad restrictions placed on them vis a vis rides. Further, you only have fixed amount of cash available to you to choose the rides which you can enjoy and you are to budget accordingly. Some people have more money than you. Some have less. You can’t keep enjoying the rides as you’ll run out of money. So you’ll have to plan something for when you grow older.

Several paths seem open and you look at your friends and what they are doing. Some can’t wait to manage a ride while some can’t wait to control the whole carnival! Some can’t wait to serve food from the food stalls, while some are impatient to guard the rides from miscreants. Someone someday sabotages a ride to make a political statement. Someone makes those rides. Someone proposes a model for how rides could work better.

Image result for carnival

Of course some days there are strikes. Some days the weather is better. But at the end, you are groomed to accept the system. To accept that there are rides and some people run it while others ride it. You could be the person working for the people running the carnival or rise to create your own ride. The people who create the rides are usually hailed as visionaries. They make a lot of money and their children go on to inherit the royalty from the rides they had created. There is also somewhat of a system in place which grooms people so that they are sufficiently trained to manage the rides. They call these places schools and the more advanced ones as universities.

Then, there are people who think about life outside the carnival. This couldn’t possibly the only Carnival? How did we enter this place? What happens when we leave? No one has managed to return after leaving the carnival and several fables have been sent down oscillating across both extremes. Some people have formed their own cults and worship some of the naturally occurring phenomena. Some worship the rides. Some worship people who made these rides. Various ideologies jostle for a place in this carnival of life and people tend to fight to get the most followers for their own belief systems. Some of these tend to get bloody. But they feel that the Almighty will forgive them as they are indirectly working for Him anyway. Some of the stories say that the world outside the Carnival is a horrid place. Others tend to say that the world outside is the place where angels flap their wings and smile at you. Of course, nobody knows anything and people are more worried about making the rides run well and on time than bothering about who set the gates in the first place.

That is not to say that the carnival is empty. Doesn’t it show the heights of human creativity? Such spectacular rides! Such colour and gusto! Such music to accompany the tempo with which the horses rise and fall while circling in the waltzer. Wasn’t Ferris such a visionary to have created the eponymous Ferris wheel? Aren’t humans amazing to build the machinery to create new and keep the existing rides running? Of course, there is the occasional mishap. More accidents happen in the poorer regions of the Carnival due to more corruption there and a lack of adequate distribution of resources. Some people continue to be unable to afford the rides, while others make a profit at their expense. But a single individual can’t do anything about that. So we give vent to our feelings in some of the eateries where we meet our peers in the form of small talk and the Carnival goes on for eternity. Of course, you come in at a specific time and leave after a few years, never to return. It’s what you do during those years that determines how the Carnival remembers you. Or maybe you don’t care if the Carnival remembers you. You just want to have a good time. Or maybe, you just want to explore the Carnival and be to all the exotic places before your ticket runs out of time.

This article, this blog is my pause. My semicolon. Not a period, because the sentence must go on. At least for now. Residing on a corner of a pixel of a pale blue dot of a yet unexplored universe, all I can do ramble on incoherently about the deeper meanings of life in a language: English which is not even my first tongue. Part of me wants to rise to this and spend the rest of my days trying to uncover this mystery to the best of my ability. Read more about it and live on it. Part of me disagrees and wants me to join the Carnival to create the next ride and hail me as the next superstar. Part of me thinks that I’ve done enough and should join the management helping to run the rides before exiting the Carnival like the millions before me, have and will continue to…

I have so many roads open. So many possibilities. So many, that it scares me. What if I choose wrong? Someone whispers into my ears that this unpredictability coupled with the limitedness of time is what makes each moment and decision so valuable. But I am at crossroads. As Reality splashes on my face, I’m yet grasping at the strings which apparently ascribe value to existence. Most people have been running a race too long to figure out why they are running and for what prize. I have had my share of this race, but if I run again, it won’t be for a race.

I’ll leave this sentence incomplete though. Someday, I hope to come back to this particular article and end with a fitting conclusion. This might remain unfulfilled of course, but all the same, I’m willing to …

(Space Left below)

 Image result for semicolon

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