Such things were common in the Village, but the cause this time, was uncommon. As the newly widowed girl sat in the corner of a dimly lit room in her new robes of red, she poured oil into a lamp, which was to burn unceasingly for 13 days. It was the lamp of death. She cried, but only to show her in-laws that she cared, for in her heart of hearts there was a surge of happiness. Happy because henceforth, she would not be slapped, beaten and pulled by her hair; her monstrous husband was no more.
Everyone in the village thought it was due to the excessive drinking, but only she knew what she had put in those bottles he drank from everyday. The extract of the ‘kalihari’ killed like nothing else. For hours it tortured him the way he had tortured her and finally upon his death bed, she had whispered in his ears, “Now we’re equal.”
– Purujuit Potnis, 12C
“No!”, I yelled… I was in bed, lying on my back, clutching on to my Looney Tunes blanket. I brushed off the sweat from my forehead, with a handkerchief, and glanced at the clock, “Ugh it’s time already.” I mumbled. I quickly got into my work clothes and took the stairs out of my apartment. I had missed my carpool that day and I couldn’t see a cab anywhere. My workplace was twenty minutes away if I walked. I hung my coat on my left shoulder and made my way to the office.
The day was extraordinarily grey because of its cloudy weather. Things seemed quite similar to the dream I had the previous night. I greeted the same old man with the white cap, caught the same orange ball that a young boy wearing a red shirt was playing with, I tripped over the same footpath at exactly 8:31 am. Things were really weird that day…
The office was exactly the way it was, dull and boring. The receptionist had gone out on leave, hence there was another man at the job today, “Just like it was in my dream!” I thought. Work was the same, boring paper work. We kept the radio on at work, usually the news frequency, everything around us was boring, deliberately I think. “And today do look out for the solar eclipse that will take place at 4 pm”, the radio announcer said. You guessed it, I had seen it all in my sleep.
“Am I psychic? Is this all just a coincidence?”, I thought. The very idea gave me shivers because last night’s dream wasn’t a happy one. I didn’t really enjoy my job but at the same time, I didn’t have much choice. My performance report said it all. It was 4 o’ clock and the sky had turned into a hue of dark orange. Everything seemed eerie. My workmates were talking about an upcoming football match, exactly what my mystical dream had foretold but that wasn’t all.
My boss walked in the cubicle section which was pretty unusual. He had a grimace on his already frowning face, his eyes were directed at me. I knew what was coming, I had seen it all. “No!”, I yelled. I was back in bed, on my back with a sweaty forehead clutching that Looney Tunes blanket, my hand already reaching for the handkerchief.
-Shaan Bhatt, 11A
In case you’ve been living under a rock and don’t know who Aarya Gadkari is- it’s time you do.He is an ultra-talented ex-Scottishite with the voice of an angel. At the age of 19, he’s already been on a TV show, done several gigs all over India and won the hearts of many! I sincerely hope that I’ve managed to get out of bed on my own by the time I’m his age. However, Aarya has been more productive and is coming out with his first and very own EP (small album) on July 6th. So we here at the Zeitgeist decided to see what he’s been up to during the gap year he’s taken.
Have you missed school? If yes, how much?
“I have, I definitely have! I was passing by with my grandparents that day and I just told them how much I just want to go inside!”
What are your plans about going back to college?
“Since my gap year is over now, I’m going to Warrick. I’m going to be studying Economics there. Then post-grad, I’m definitely going to pursue music, there’s no question about that!”
What tips would you give to someone wanting to take a gap year?
“Now I’m no poster boy for education or anything. I just think that no matter what you’re doing, you should have a month by month plan as to what you’re going to do throughout the year. You can’t just say ‘I’ll take it as it comes’. Even my parents were worried what I’d do, especially since I was taking a gap year while they were living abroad and I was here alone. But, I made a proper plan. Once I got selected for The Stage, I was like ‘okay, at least June to September is covered. Then in October, I’ll do this.’ And that way I had what I was doing for the year mostly sorted, so I could make full use of it. As long as you have a proper plan, a gap year is not a bad idea.”
How different is it performing at the annual concert, in contrast to having to perform in front of an unknown audience?
“When you’re singing at the Christmas concert and all, you have that certain belief and comfort level because although you never think you’ve performed well, people will come up to you later and say you did well, so you get some confidence. But being thrown out into the open is scary, man!”
How different is the experience of recording music professionally?
“It was an amazing experience! But I’d literally be in there for 8-9 hours straight, just recording and it would be so tiring. But if you’re having fun and you love your work, then it’s just great. There’s a lot of work that goes into it because you can’t just go in, sing and come out. You need to carefully select each sound, like what guitar sound you want or which drum beat you want playing.”
How does your family react to all the female attention you’ve been getting?
“My mom is slightly overprotective, but my dad was damn happy because females are interested in his son and my brother wanted me to give out his Instagram username if I won The Stage!”
Why is your EP called ‘One Year, One House’? Give us a little backstory.
“So I’ve been working on the EP for the past year. And all the songs are stuff I’ve written over a period of like a few years since I was around 15.” (After that the interviewer as well as the ‘celebrity’ being interviewed lost track of what the question was and digressed, as we do.)
Can you give us a little insight into a few of the songs and what they’re going to be like?
“So the songs that I write are either my experiences or the experiences of people around me. ‘Wasted for Love’ is a story about three of my friends from the point of view of one of them. Then ‘Mum and Dad’ is obviously, about mum and dad and I think people are going find it very relatable. Then there is this other song called ‘When You Walk Down The Aisle’. The inspiration for this song came when I was at a wedding and the bride was walking down the aisle and there was a band playing this certain tune over and over again. And something struck me then and this one tune got stuck in my head. So I took out my phone and recorded that tune right then and there!”
What song would you say is your favourite from the EP?
“I think my personal favourite would be ‘Mum and Dad’. I’m just so excited for you guys to hear it! I’ve made a few people hear it and they were in tears. My mum started crying on the phone only!”
Obviously, you might have had days where you feel low and don’t feel like writing. What helps you get over that?
“Nothing really. So after The Stage got over, I had the biggest writer’s block. I had so much content I could have written about, but literally nothing was coming to me. And once I was back from the competition, I slept for 22 hours straight! I’d barely gotten sleep over the past few weeks because we’d be up till 3:30 am shooting and then practice and then shoot. But even after that, I just couldn’t write. Then my mum called me and told me to come to Dubai. So I went there for 2 weeks to take a break and recover. My advice is, if you can’t write, don’t write. Because when you write with a writer’s block, it will not be your best work.”
Would you ever be open to releasing a song that you may not particularly connect with?
“Out of around 40 songs that I’ve written, I wouldn’t want to perform like 25! I just don’t think they’re good enough, unless I really really need to- I won’t perform them because I’m not completely satisfied with them.”
How much did you love Ed’s new album Divide? (Context: Aarya worships Ed Sheeran) What was your favourite song?
“Personally, I like ‘Multiply’ more. ‘Divide’ is a mind-blowing album, but I feel like Multiply really put him and his music out there. I’d say my favourite songs from ‘Divide’ were Perfect and Galway Girl! (to Aarushi) -You’re literally the first person I know that loves Eraser as well! Everyone says they don’t like him rapping.”
What tips would you like to offer to any budding artists?
“My only advice is- don’t overthink it, just go for it. And learn when to put your foot down. You will be criticised at times, but don’t let it get you.”
Last but not the least, are we (your fans) ever going to get a song dedicated to us?
“Not right now because I’ve got a long way to go and when I have a bigger fanbase, definitely!”
If you’ve made it so far into the article, you’re probably already a fan or just became one! Either way, from the above ‘interview’ we gather two things:
1) Aarya has the most adorable mom ever and
2) You need to go check out his EP ‘One Year, One House’ on Youtube, iTunes, Saavn, Google Play.
We hope you enjoyed reading about Aarya and we hope you enjoy his symphonic melodies as much as we did.
-Zara Humranwala and Aarushi Zarthoshtimanesh, 11A
According to ‘Wikipedia’,” Stand-up comedy is a comic style in which a comedian performs in front of a live audience, usually talking directly to them. The performer is commonly known as a stand-up comedian. Stand-up comedy is not just about going up on stage and belting out jokes that you have prepared for the night. It is a unique form of art.
I have attended several shows, watched many stand-up comedians perform and have also spoken to a few of them.
I believe that stand-up comedians are the most approachable celebrities I have ever seen.
The reason to why I love this art form is because it has helped me to battle feelings of depression during some of the most difficult times of my life.
I respect these performers immensely because it is one of those art forms that involve improvisation, doing away completely anything that is scripted. A stand-up comedian needs to be alert at all times while he is performing because he can never know what may suddenly become a joke. The jokes have to be not only relatable and unique but also topical.
Stand up comedy is about the delivery and timing of the joke. A joke is considered a good joke, not only because of WHAT is said but also because of HOW it’s said.
Being a successful stand-up comedian is difficult. There is no way to learn comedy; there is no textbook, no exams for it, no entrance tests, you take your jokes, walk up the stage, be confident and just make people laugh.
Here’s a piece of advice, if you want to do something completely different from what you are pursuing now, TRY IT, DON’T BE AFRAID OF FAILURE. If you don’t experience things go wrong, how will you know what’s right? You will never know success unless you fail.
-Iqra Khan (11B)
Priyanka Chopra as we all know has gone from being just a normal girl from Jharkhand to becoming Miss World to winning the People’s Choice Awards for two years consecutively (for Quantico). She’s reached heights of success that neither she nor her audience had ever imagined. However, her career choices haven’t always been flawless. Her performances were not always as good as Barfi, Mary Kom and Fashion, she did make a few mistakes like God Tussi Great Ho, What’s your Raashee and her singing career. After securing her place in Bollywood, Priyanka decided to put her vocal talents to use and began her music career in 2012. And just like Neerja’s plane, her music didn’t exactly take off either.
But Priyanka being Priyanka did not treat this as a setback, in fact, she came back with a boom in 2015 being the first South Asian woman to headline an American network TV series- Quantico. Her performance in the tv show just got better with every episode, leaving every member of the audience stunned and waiting for more. And after all that harsh criticism she received about her accent, she’s the one dancing with the Tom Hiddleston at the Emmy’s after-party, while we are sitting and hogging on potato chips…
Deepika is the epitome of #goals. She has it all- the perfect figure, the perfect face, the perfect sense of humour, the perfect fashion sense and most importantly, the perfect boyfriend. Her versatility has proven that she’s truly an asset to the industry. With every role she portrays, she completely gets into her character until she perfects it and that is exactly what made her the actress she is today. After giving some brilliant performances in Cocktail, Ram-Leela and Bajirao Mastani, Deepika decided to try her luck in Hollywood. She said on Ellen, that she had auditioned for Fast and Furious 7 but did not get the part, but as luck had it, a year later, she signed a contract for XXX where she was going to be acting side by side with Vin Diesel.
Deepika worked extremely hard on this film, showing us a different side of her which was previously unknown to her audiences. She constantly worked on performing stunts in the movie and demanded to do as many action sequences as she could on her own. However, the film didn’t receive the appreciation that they thought it would’ve. To say the least, it was a letdown. The story line was not thought of clearly, the movie didn’t really make too much sense when put together and the box offices were pretty much empty after the first week. However, we are sure this is just the start and Deepika has a lot more in store for her fans.
Both these Bollywood stars have managed to reach the peak of their success but at the same time remained down to earth- a quality that is highly admirable. Managing their work, their family and their personal life has been anything but easy, but the girls have not only managed to do so but also done a great job. Along with joining Hollywood, they’ve stayed true to their roots and continued to do Hindi films and completely dedicate themselves to it while doing it. No matter how much the public or the media criticises them, they have done extremely well for themselves. They are women that girls of today should look up to and hope to follow their footsteps. We can’t wait to see what else they have in store for us! Tollywood, beware- you may be next.
Little did I know what was in store for me as I shuffled into the tall office building where I worked. I was a teller for the Royal Bank of Scotland and had just come in for my shift that morning. It had been a bad morning for my manager Mr Stephens and I could already hear him screaming at the others as I entered hurriedly. I was late.
“Ahh, good morning, thank you for gracing us with your presence.” he said sarcastically.
“I am sorry, Sir,” I muttered trying to get to my desk as quickly as possible. My co-worker Joe gave me a consoling nod as I walked past him.
Our shift began a little after ten and the clients started coming in. I did not particularly like my job. It involved too many fake smiles and unrequited ‘good mornings’ and ‘good days’ and just too much interaction with people in general. Yet, it was the only job I could find and it payed the bills. Joe, on the other hand, loved his job. He thrived on people and loved the fact that he got to talk to so many people in one day. The clients loved him and he loved them. This would be bad if we were paid by the number of clients we serviced but we all got equal salaries so it did not bother me much.
Eleven-thirty, I saw in the large clock ticking above the front doors of the bank. Another hour till lunch, I thought to myself as a bald man sat in front of me. I noticed that Joe was servicing a regular with a twinkle in his eyes.
“Good morning, Sir, how may I help you today?” with the fakest smile I could muster.
Baldy, as he is going to be referred to henceforth, mentioned his name, I forgot it instantly. He wanted to make a withdrawal. As I entered his account details I noticed three men standing idly by the entrance not going anywhere in particular.
“I am sorry sir, there seems to be no money in your account.”
“Well, it’s going to have some soon”, Baldy replied as he pulled out a pistol and stood up on the chair at the same time the three idle men sprang to action. Each one pulled on a mask, jammed the doors shut and started gathering the clients alike in the centre of the bank.
“As all of you must have guessed, this is a robbery.” Said Baldy as one of his goons dragged Mr. Stephens out from his office. All of us except Mr. Stephens were lying on the floor. He was having a deep conversation with Baldy. Two goons watched us while the third loaded their bags with money. They had clearly done their homework, the van with the fresh stock of currency usually came in around eleven, so most of the money was still there. This continued for about ten minutes before the bags were loaded and the Baldy’s Gang was ready to leave. Out of the corner of my eye I saw some movement on the floor. It was Joe inching slightly forward, but towards what? I followed his eyes; it was in the direction of Baldy who had turned away and was barking instructions at his men.
Joe was heading towards the pistol hanging loosely by his side.
‘Don’t be a hero Joe. It’s not worth it’ I thought to myself but there was little I could do without attracting attention. Joe was close now, maybe three feet. ‘Don’t turn around, don’t turn around’ I hoped. He did. It was not pleasant.Baldy turned around and in some sort of reflex action pulled out his pistol and shot Joe right between the middle of his eyes. Blood. So much blood. All I could think of in that moment was that it would leave a stain on the marble.
One of his goons shouted, “Boss had said no casualties!” They hurried off after that leaving Joe dead, in a pool of blood.
That night at home I was thinking about the events of the day when there was a knock on the door. I opened it. Baldy stood there.
“Here is the money, Boss.”
“I thought I said no casualties.”
“He sprung up on me, what was I supposed to do?”
“Follow instructions,” I said, as I pulled out my pistol.
Now, that bank robbery had two casualties.
-Udyaksh Khera 12B
The Floopy Chronicles Part 2
More Glorious, World-And-Humanity-Ending (Mis)Adventures of Floopy
Floopy has no plans. For anything at all, really. He mumbles vague obscenities at minorities and promises to bring about better times, with no history of being able to do that, ever. And people lap it up, saying “He says what’s on his mind; I like that! He has no policy ideas, or policy or government experience, but he says what I’d love to, so he has my vote”. Excuse me while I vomit.
Let’s dissect ‘Monsieur’ Floopy, shall we?
He says he’s rich. He’s approximately 7.9 billion dollars poorer than he says he is.
He says he’s capable of running a nation because he ran a business successfully. That, however, depends on if you define ‘successfully’ as having failed most of his ventures.
Floopy Airlines? He bought a low-cost airline flying a busy route, revamped the planes, fitted them with gold, turned them into luxury shuttles, and crashed the business; Failed.
Floopy vodka? Failed.
Floopy steak? Failed.
Floopy casinos? Failed.
More Floopy casinos? Failed.
Ridiculously enough, even more Floopy casinos? Failed.
A Floopy board game? Failed.
Floopy Mortgage? F-A-I-L-E-D.
Floopy Magazine? I mean, really, come on; Failed.
Floopy University? Failed so badly that he’s going on trial for fraud. That’s right: America just elected a con man to the office of ‘most powerful man on earth’.
Floopy’s marriage? Failed.
Floopy’s second marriage? Failed.
Judging from his impressive (slow clap here) track record, we can only assume that Republicans want to add ‘Floopy: The Presidency’ to the list.
Bizarrely enough, even though he has no political experience at all (barring, of course, his interaction with world leaders like Miss Ukraine, Miss Spain, etc., and his marital sessions with different East European women) and has failed to prove his worth as a businessman, the one job title he can claim credit for, he is still respected as a capable leader.
Fun fact #1: he lost $915,729,293 in one year-1995. At today’s exchange, and not factoring inflation for the 20 years, from 1995-2015, that’s Rs. 6188,03,61,188.01, or 6,188.03 crore rupees. And he then used that loss to not pay tax to his government for the next 18 years, using a tax manoeuvre so shady that the US Government eventually outlawed it. He claimed that his abuse of the tax system was a mark of his brilliant negotiating and manipulative skills, and that it was Hillary Clinton’s fault for not fixing the tax system to prevent him from being able to ‘cheat it’. Let that sink in. This is a man claiming to be business-savvy, saying that he cheated because he could. They just gave him nuclear power. That he can use. Now let that sink in.
To recap: A pathological liar, narcissistic egotistical moron, and all-around xenophobic, inexperienced weed.
Fun Fact #2: He. Won. Because. Of. An. Archaic. System. Of. Elections.
Floopy received less overall votes than Ms Clinton did. He won because of America’s system of direct-indirect presidential elections, known as the electoral college. The Democratic Party’s nominee, Hillary Clinton, won more votes than Floopy did overall, but still lost the election. So not only is he incompetent, he’s also in office because of an outdated system. Fantastic.
Fun Fact #3: We’re all kind of doomed if he sticks to his policy on global warming.
Primarily because he doesn’t believe in it.
He’s said that global warming is the work of the Chinese, a hoax propagated to reduce US business competency. And he probably believes it, too. Which is absolutely disastrous, because America is the second-largest polluter in the world, and if it suddenly decides that it’s doing nothing wrong, and Floopy revokes all the climate change prevention work done by Obama, the world will start speeding down the path to global extinction of small animals and plants. This is accelerated by the fact that he wants to destroy the EPA [Environmental Protection Agency] and has appointed Myron Ebell, a man known for being anti-climate change, to head his transition team for the US’s environment protection efforts.
If the US pulls out of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, it will have to withdraw from the United Nations Council that oversees it, because the agreement has already been entered into effect, and will take 4 years [effectively, the duration of Floopy’s presidency] to withdraw from otherwise. The loss of the United States to UN climate change efforts will throw the world back by a huge amount, and with Floopy’s desire to reopen coal plants [which shut because they were no longer cost-competent, and are now 4 times more expensive than wind to run] which will add millions of tons of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases than are already being released. Adding to the mess is the issue that scientists depend heavily on government money to do research, and with a Floopy administration capable of shutting down all funds for climate research, a glut in preventive measures and clean energy solutions research will spell disaster for the green movement.
We should be scared. Very scared.
Oh, and he’s also trying to get universities to charge less from US students, which means they’ll start charging more from international ones. Bloody brilliant. There goes my grant for studying solar-cell efficiency improvements in college.
If my other article wasn’t clear enough on my anger, just read the nutcase’s Twitter feed, or LITERALLY ANY ARTICLE covering him, from a newspaper that is not right-wing. You’ll feel the anger too.
PS: There are dozens of things I have omitted because this article is already far longer than I was supposed to write, but a quick half hour reading up on his policies and plans will go a long way. Just google it, there are scores of articles with good content available freely on the web.
PPS: He recently shot at the New York Times, for reporting the news. Like a newspaper is supposed to. Blech. He’s now threatening the freedom of the press in his home country, and if the champion of global democracy decides to kill free press, and effectively end free speech, what do you think, will happen to the world?
The Floopy Chronicles: Part 1
The Glorious, World-And-Humanity-Ending (Mis)Adventures of Floopy
I threw a bottle. At a friend. I regret it but that action, of lifting a piece of hollow plastic, the closest thing in my reach, and hurling it at the source of the information that the Republicans had won the White House, was my instinctive reaction to the news. The knowledge that Donald J. Trump (who shall henceforth be referred to as ‘Floopy’) had been elected President of the United States of America is the scariest thing in my mental databank of information. (Note: I’ve seen ISIS beheadings. This is worse. Much worse.) Everyone simply says that Floopy getting elected is bad for immigrants and non-whites. No one’s really seen the worst part of this disgusting, filthy, inhuman, monstrous, devilish, demonic, ghastly, animalistic, bizarre, unearthly calamity that has been nicknamed the US Presidential Election of 2016. So let’s get into a really in-depth character sketch.
Who is Floopy? A real-estate mogul and ‘successful’ businessman. He claims a net worth of over 10 billion dollars. In reality, it’s around 20% of that. He claims to be a self-made man after taking a million dollar loan from daddy dearest. He’s known for being a reality TV host. He’s known for being larger-than-life. He is a scumbag.
In bullet form, here are a few things that Floopy believes:
• He’s the best.
• Everyone should share the aforementioned belief.
• He’s not racist.
• He’s not sexist.
• He’s not a pig.
• He’s not an [insert cuss words that cannot appear in a school article] excuse for a human being].
• He’s smart.
• He’s your ideal leader.
• He knows what he’s doing.
In bullet form, here’s how much of that is true:
• None of it.
Floopy ran a campaign that was largely populist. He was seeking to represent the interests of ordinary people. In many ways, it was populist. He claimed to represent Americans who were suppressed by others. He said that he would ‘make America great again’. To a massively disillusioned and backward voter base, his words rang true. His target audience comprised mainly of blue-collar white Christian males from areas of economic stagnation. His targets comprised everyone who didn’t fit the above description. For the large segment of the American population who believe that immigrants, foreign powers, rich people and weak leaders are the reason that America’s growth has stagnated, his speeches struck a chord. These are the people who believe that guns are a necessity of life; that LGBTQ individuals are worthy of being stoned (preferably, to death); that liberals, progressives, and other like-minded individuals, are breaking the desires of their deity; that women should be seen, not heard, not given respect, be treated as servants for men and not care about anything but the pleasure of their male counterparts. If this disgusts you: good. If it doesn’t… here’s another group who preached the same values and are currently massively successful in their country: The Taliban.
It was Halloween night. The driveways were adorned with carved pumpkins and terrifying decorations. As kids counted the treats they received that night and the lights went out of the jack-o-lanterns, two teenagers, Ray and John, roamed the streets of Georgetown. It was eerie roaming around so late on Halloween night with no one in sight. Being out on Halloween night at such a time, when the spirits were supposed to be roaming around , enticed them. As they were strolling down a street , they noticed a light shine across. John was hesitant to go towards the light but Ray encouraged him saying that they would never know what lay ahead of them. They headed towards the lit area. The light was coming from the ancients theatre that had once burned down. There they saw men in formal attire and women dressed in heavy gowns with elaborately done up hair. John thought it was a Halloween party but things became weird when a lady with powdered skin and blood red lips walked through Ray. Ray yelled as loudly as he could and expected a reaction from the surrounding crowd but everybody remained oblivious to him. They all were pouring into the theatre for some show which had posters put up on the outside wall. Ray and John crept into the theatre with them and saw a grand and phenomenally decorated auditorium with red drapes and an ebony stage. They made their way backstage to see the lead actress puffing her face with white powder and brushing blush over her cheeks. A tall man with a short beard soon entered her dressing room and they started to have a heated discussion. The star didn’t wish to marry him but he was so in love with her. He had this passion in his eyes that was inexplainable. John was terrified after his experience with the medieval ghosts. But Ray persisted. The show soon began and Ray and John meandered among the audience but something peculiar caught their eye. The tall man with the short beard walked down the aisles pouring something out of a can and went to the entrance of the theatre and lit a match. In a minute, roaring flames were swallowing the theatre. Though these flames were virtual and couldn’t effect John and Ray, they reacted to it with the same intensity as they would have normally. People were screaming and crying and were running for their life. John and Ray ran out with the ghostly audience .They soon come to the town square where it was only them and they looked at each other realising they had experienced the night the theatre had burned down…
-Tanisha Sinha, 10A
“Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light.”
Happiness is a strange emotion. One can find it in the smallest of things and yet, it is for happiness that people do the unthinkable.
Happiness is the innocent smile of a child when he sees his mother after coming back home from his first day at school, the feeling of pure triumph and accomplishment, the satisfaction that is derived from helping someone. At times, it can also be the reason for someone to commit a felony. For instance, in the movie Tara Rum Pum, the father having lost everything asked his best friend for a money to spend on his wife’s treatment. Whereas, he used it to throw his son a party on his birthday, just to see him happy after all they had been through. Yes, it was a lie, and he did betray those who trusted him, but then again that’s where the phrase ‘the end always justifies the means’ comes from.
Some people, however, are unable to find happiness. They may have everything in the world, and yet happiness is the only thing they lack! They say “money can’t buy happiness” and that is true, indeed. We always compare ourselves to people that are economically forward but fail to see what kinds of problems may be hidden behind all those riches.
‘Happiness’ means different things to different people. To some happiness is just being surrounded by their loved ones, or giving back to society in the way of donation or that complete happiness you get from hearing the words, “you made my day” However, the reasons to be happy might not always be this positive. A trait found especially in competitive people is deriving happiness from another person’s failure.
People who have very little, materialistically, are usually happier than people who have it all. I might have mentioned something earlier contradicting this, but that doesn’t mean it’s not true. Whenever I pass by this street near my house, I see these people living under asbestos roofs and in houses that are barely holding together. Despite their living situation, I see kids running around and laughing, old women sitting out front and gossiping, men shouting and jeering at each other in friendly banter. It makes me wonder about my own life. From the outside it may look amazing, but no one really knows whether one is truly happy in life or not. But if I’m going to be frank then I must admit that there is an emptiness in me where happiness should be.
It’s quite difficult to understand what happiness is really. It’s not the same as satisfaction or love or pride. They say white is a mixture of all the colours, well happiness is the white of emotions. It’s a mixture of every feeling a human can feel on extreme levels.
Sometimes we’re in this constant search for happiness and can’t seem to find it. We don’t let go of things, we’re on a hunt to search for things we think we want, we try to accomplish goals, attain materialistic things, do unthinkable things just to attain happiness. But we forget to look in the most important place, where happiness truly lies- in ourselves. If you want to be happy, then all you need to do is learn to let go of things you desire, and start looking for things you truly need.
– Sabah Mehta 11A
The Universe: What is it after all?
The Universe is the most magnificent thing that exists. Nothing can compare to the enigma and mystery and danger that it holds. We are all a product of it. Also, it is a very big paradox. It is everything that matters; yet it doesn’t really matter at all. It holds inside itself all the answers; yet it has a question mark upon itself. It makes us think, ponder, and feel many great things; yet doesn’t really affect us. It is always moving, happening and on the go; yet just so calm and stable.
The Universe is also the fountainhead of many of the queries and doubts. One that really boggles me is that- Are we really alone in the entirety of the bearer or possibilities?
Maybe and maybe not. Maybe we are the only ones lucky enough to exist. Coincidences are rare. Or maybe, there are others, living, breathing, and wondering just like us. All in all, there are two possibilities: either we are alone in this entire universe or not. And both are equally intimidating. if you come to think of it, most of the things you think about the Universe always begin with a “maybe”. Maybe all that we see is an illusion. Maybe what we think we know about it isn’t true at all.
I have also thought about something quite interesting. As we have been taught in Mathematics, “uni” usually means one (as in unitary method). So, in the word “universe” it, therefore, means “one verse”. The name itself is contradictory!
Humans have the tendency to dig for answers, but is it really a good idea? What if one day we come to know that we are only experiments performed by some other huge alien being? Think about it all and you’re bound to lose it.
We are all so insignificant and yet we have the power to name the Universe and decide what’s in it. Imagination is a gift to us from the Universe. And our imagination is thus the greatest gift to ourselves. It allowed us to create heavenly things like the Internet and rollercoasters and stories and music and pizzas!
The Universe is enormous and yet it can fit into our minuscule and allow us to sculpt in into whatever we like it as. For instance, if you are vexed about something and you think about the Universe, you will probably imagine its destructive form, with all its furious blasts and like. If you are peaceful, you will think of it’s unperturbed composure, the way it is still and stable. Therefore, I think its safe to say that everyone has his or her own Universe and we matter to it as much as it matters to us.
You are a part of the Universe, and the universe is a part of you.
It’s not every day, when you see a gracefully bulky man riding ski jets, radiating positivity free of cost, and inspiring you to achieve greater heights and overcoming the impossible; however, when you do so stumble on a particular ‘djkhaled305’ username on Snapchat, you come across the extraordinary and end up exposing yourself to a person – a person who allows you to be unique and stay away from ‘They’, the ones who don’t want you to win and succeed. Many may feel saturated from the constant reminders Mr Khaled has to offer, so much so, that they nearly press the “Block”button. However, whenever you try to do so, the lovely positivity of this Palestinian beauty stops the negative thoughts from culminating into a greater sin, allowing him to stay on your feed for another two weeks. The man resembles a giant egg roll covered in bling, carrying an air of tranquillity and royalty that allows you to slip into a positively enforced drive. The monotonous egg whites, turkey bacon, chicken sausage and the ritualistic water diet, is often presented with disturbing close-ups of Chef Dee. Next is a specially filmed workout routine, that forces you to get out of the bed and take up the most convenient exercise. This man makes everything look so easy and inspirational that ‘all one wants to do is win’.
A role model for the youth and a constant advocate for equality, Mr Khaled’s campaign and portrayal of the American Life is ‘BOOMIN’. The world we live in today is plagued with incessant cursing and humiliation of our Mother Nature;however, the same is not seen in Mr Khaled, who shamlessly and patriotically announces his love for his MAMA and waters the greener grass, which one should always strive to achieve, no matter what. Personally speaking, Mr Khaled is not only a role model but also a legend in his own way. With 6 million subscribers on Snapchat, Mr Khaled is doing the inevitable- creating a dramatic revolution of motivation and positivity, which the world is currently deprived of. What we need immediately is not Donald Trump’s aggressive policies or Hillary Clinton’s trump card. What we need is tickets to DJ Khaled’s recent concert collaboration with the mysteriously wicked Beyonce (No ill feelings intended, but she does carry that vibe).From an underground artist, to a pop culture icon, DJ Khaled’s journey filled with intense emotion and royalty is creating wonders and motivating people like Mr Trump and Rakhi Sawant to pursue a career in politics.
The man is not only an inspirational speaker, but also a talented businessman, an iconic artist, and more importantly JAY-Z’s boss. We need more people like Dj Khaled, who are ready to take risks and break out of the traditional stereotypes and social stigma which has looked down upon enthusiastic and unique people, long curtailed individuality and snatched away the right to express oneself clearly, boldly and lovingly, often bottling up the real emotions and the truth.
By propagating his personal experiences and takes on life, the 40-year-old record producer and multifaceted Arab has driven and united the world for one ultimate objective, ‘TO STAY AWAY FROM THEY AND TO RIDE WITH HIM THROUGH THE JOURNEY OF SUCCESS’.
-Siddhant Sharma 12A
A pot of flowers in an auto rickshaw is absurd, I feel. On closer
inspection of the vehicle’s interiors – something avant-garde was at
play. An interior design like one out of a children’s book; a well
designed vanilla white metal interior with framed literary verses and
a light show.
The little sample of external conformity intrigued me enough to want to find out the backing to such a setup.
On further enquiry, the reply initially informed me that the plant was
in fact a real, living, breathing and photosynthesizing plant. Its
purpose – to welcome the traveller.
So why the woodwork? It was his passion – a sort of application of his
skills to add that little change to his everyday work.
Also, Mr. Ameen is not only an auto rickshaw driver but also a
plumber, a handyman and is capable of doing any job requiring the
application of his technical expertise.
Mr. Ameen was an unexpected man. Everyone has a story, but when you
have some sort of ice breaker or invitation, discovery gets easier.
People get extremely happy when you ask them what they are passionate about and thus, I asked the autoist to navigate through a slightly longer route as time was of the essence at that moment.
Mr. Ameen showed me a two storey house on our way.
It was here that he acquired his liking towards mastering the internal
workings of mechanical systems. As a labourer’s son, he dissembled toys
AND reassembled them, instead of breaking them like most children do.
Later he moved on to going to the market and buying wires and small
components to play with. His passion would eventually land him in
Saudi Arabia where he’d work as a handyman.
However, life had more thrilling plans for him.
On asking about his skilful use of the English Language, I found out
that Mr. Ameen had practiced his speech in the U.S. where he worked in
Texas in one George W Bush’s company. His excellent track record in
his previous job was noted by one of Bush’s associates in Saudi
Texas wasn’t the end for him. The U.S. Army deployed him as a
technician for residence appliances on an Afghan military base. Mr.
Ameen claimed this to be his best job experience; he described it to
be his best paying job as well as an excellent oppurtunity to befriend
soldiers on the war field.
So what brought this globetrotting individual back to his home
country? The answer is ironically not Trump, but, it is Obama. Obama’s
economic reforms during his presidential candidature introduced
cutbacks on military base expenditure translating to Mr. Ameen heading
back to India.
“So Mr. Ameen, you have so much job experience but why did you decide
to become an Auto Rickshaw Driver? You did mention it was more of a
I was startled by the ubiquitous truth.
Competitiveness drives applicants to strive for higher qualifications.
When the numbers are high, no one cares about your story. I left out a
small detail – Mr. Ameen didn’t receive any formal education at all; never in his life did
he step into a single educational institution as a student. Aldous Huxley right stated, “Experience is not what happens to a man; it is what a man does with what happens to him.”
The takeaway from the incident – at least for me – was that it doesn’t
matter whether you’re endowed with opportunities or not, as long as
you’ve got the drive in you.
To paraphrase Mr. Ameen, ” I believe one must love what they do and
eventually things will turn out right.”
-Vickram Peter 12 B
“Rice of Adrenaline”
A lunch break on Friday. It’s the only day we’re served Paneer Butter Rice in the school canteen. I’d longed for this dish for precisely two agonising days. An obsession had formed in my mind, the thought of Paneer Butter Rice had me ready to run for the food stall, as soon as the bell for lunch break would ring.
However, as luck would have it, work caught up with me and I was delayed. As I rushed out of my classroom, five minutes was all it took for the stall nearby to run out of food. With the wallet in my hand, I ran down the flight of stairs, a glimmer of hope in my heart to find this dish at another stall. I was skipping down steps, jumping down three steps at a time. There was a rush of adrenaline.
About a metre and a half away from the stall, I could see what I wanted, the school lunch package, only one of its kind present. The meal would either be my favourite school combination of shining yellow rice, layers of which were packed with a gravy the colour of the Martian soil (to best describe it) and flavoured with a sweet taste and a tinge of spice, topped with chunks of paneer or the meal would be insignificant, non-consequential ‘Vegetable Biryani’. My heart beat faster as I was about to find out- What was there in store for me.
I skipped a few steps, edged my body forward over the ledge of the table to look over and confirm what this item so placed was. I took a deep breath, and felt my chest get lighter as I read the initials ‘B.P.’ in bold, marked across the cover in bold black letters.
Would this treat justify what I’d dreamt of for the past few days? Would the Paneer Butter Rice be what I’d recalled from the previous year which motivated me and led me to believe that it would be the same as it has been in the past and in fact not a pretentious imposter?
I produced a wad of ten rupee notes and handed them over to the lady at the counter.
“Nahi Beta, ye kisi aur ka order hai,” came the response!
–Vickram Peter 11B
A week back, I got a mail. Not an e-mail, which is weird but a hand written letter enclosed in a brown paper envelope. Just like the one I always carry in case I get lost on some distant land due to my desperate search for adventure.
Only my name in its front. No address. No telephone number. Nobody besides Facebook and 9gag send me emails. It was far from real for me to receive a letter. I was hoping it was a message from another world or maybe a treasure map. Because damn, which 15 year old didn’t want adventure in the torturous heap of giant textbooks and notes.
I was at school trying to create my space ship when this piece of paper landed at my residence arousing doubt and suspicion in the mind of my joint family, that had the thought process of torturing me likewise; joint. So when I set foot on the threshold of my home, my sister who otherwise never spoke to me handed me the letter, “family’s” I tell you, no sense of privacy. I mean teenagers need that, right?
So my dusty hands harvest the already once harvested grain out of its husk to find the already read before letter that was clearly sent for me. Only to read,”Red Ranger, please report to the Pride Rock before you fall into the black hole and start sending yourself anonymous letters (from outer space) telling you to fix your future which technically is your past. I’m watching you. This isn’t a joke.’
P.S. Don’t watch interstellar ever again.
And that explains why my family finds me weird and my obsession with power rangers, remotely associated with the lion king and other movies having anything to do with space.
Damn, I am one sorted out person.
-Saaranga Shetty 11B