March 30, 2008

Of Taking Stands and Growing Up

“Grow up!” These are perhaps the most heard two words in my life. Mom and dad have perfected a look when they see me physically, or a certain duration of pause over the telephone to convey this message. Sis has perfected a grunt that means grow up. Best Friends worry that their children will call me “Grow Up Banjo Uncle” (poor kids. They will think my name is Madhurjya G.U.) But the worst is that these days even juniors have started saying it. Sometimes it is, “it’s a long time since then. You should grow up.” At other times, it’s “you won’t change. Grow up”

The problem I believe is that I have the Peter Pan Syndrome like a true blue Sagittarian. We refuse to grow up. We do not like the world of Grown ups where everyone is so serious, a world where friends meet to discuss the latest pay hikes or the last car they bought. Eeks, I’ll suffocate and die in such a world. Peter Pan rocks.

But sometimes there is some rub off effects. I have begun to act like grown ups in certain areas. I throw tantrums if I see people wasting energy or water. We are pooling a car to office, instead of taking separate cars which people appreciate saying, “you guys worry about company financials”, but which in reality is another way I can help the environment. The Housekeeping in my pseud upmarket and uptight hotel thinks I am crazy as I do not allow them to change my towels and bed sheets everyday. A Peter Pan would do the same things without throwing the tantrums perhaps, but then what the hell.

Someone heard this and told me “So you are an idealist?” Holy Cow!!! No way!!! Neither do I want to be. I think idealists are great people if you find them. I have met many along my journey and typically find them of the following types.

The True Idealist – passionate about a cause. Goes about his work without bothering about what the world thinks about it. Some of them might turn into page 3 idealists, yet they do their basic work. Some of course are fraud idealists getting an idealist cloak to get into Page 3.

The Could be Idealist - these guys have the same qualities as idealists. It’s only that they haven’t found the cause they want to fight and so they go about their normal life. If a cause is not found soon, they will never become one.

The What If idealist – These guys typically have sold their souls to family, money, career or something similar and every night in their beds they lie and feel sad about the good that they could have done. But then they go to sleep because the next day they have important meeting to attend.

The One Day Idealist – The What If idealist lives in this dream world where he says, “One day I will go back and do what I wanted to do and change the world” Normally that never happens. This guy is more miserable than the What If Idealist depending on whether he really believes in the One Day syndrome or is just using it as an excuse.

The Please Call me Idealist – These are the ones that are most common. They will tell everyone, whether they want to hear or not, that they are great people, capable of extraordinary things, it’s just that they are stuck in a mediocre life. So they will crib on and on how they deserve more than they have and how they are waiting for the things to fall in place and they wait and wait and bore everyone around them to death.

Me? I’m just an ordinary guy leading an ordinary life. :)

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