When I was going through all the junk I brought back from the campus where I got a diploma in the abstract globe that is called management, I came across a sheet of paper on which I had scribbled some gibberish that I realized was written in a drunken fit on one of the many days I was lost to the spirits. I have reproduced the same in near-verbatim (“near” because I have chosen to leave out the more colourful adjectives, and have replaced some of the nouns with “relevant people”). One of the happiest moments I had on campus was when one of the professors noted that I wasn’t the “IIM type”…I forget the context. I also realized that the exclusion I felt from the general junta is manifest in the third person narrative I had written in.
Smiles plastered on their faces. Firm handshakes. Flat hi-fi’s. Hugs for the ladies. Furtive glances, with tinges of lust, at the more beautiful ones. Constellations of friends revolving in the space of life. But are they friends, or just friendly people? These are the people who speak of “RG” as if it is a joke, but practice it religiously. These are the people who take an oath of ethics and don’t flinch when they see their friends and “leaders” happily transgress them. Everybody is a fucking hypocrite. They know what visage to wear with whom and they always carry their wardrobe of masks wherever they go. And everybody is supposed to trust these poltus and look up to them as leaders and pay them tons of money to take care of everything.
The biggest lesson anyone learns here is how to recognize the relevant toes in the crowded bus that is this life, and how not to step on them, while trampling on the not-so-relevant ones. What a shame it is that the same people who are supposed to uphold everything ethical and good are the bane of it. One can’t help but wonder if this is a reflection of the real society. Is the human sentiment hurtling towards a black hole of practiced ignorance? Is what is transpiring in this institution, which is supposed to be the “factory of future leaders”, an indication of what is to come?
Everybody changes here. It is not the system or the place. It is the people. Even the not-so-bad characters automatically transform into spineless, ass-licking automatons posing as someone who can tell an expert that they know the stuff better than them. And these experts keep buying the lies of the hypocrites. It is always about your CGPA, which is about how well lubricated you keep the relevant peoples’ behinds, while trampling on the others you smile at and dance with.
Can one make a leader? Can character be taught? Can’t the corp-kanths see that they are only adding fire to this inferno by paying obscene salaries that the sly-kanths don’t deserve, thus hurtling the whole system into a vicious cycle? Is this blindness contagious? We go from one framework to another, one stereotype to another. Why can’t one hear anyone shouting out about this pakeshed ajjjjuuuufffffff-ness?
And in all this confusion, those who come here continue to become what they shouldn’t be. They are told that nothing is black and white, and they are told to be gray. It is understood that they should lead many lives. It is understood that none of these lives would be like anything in the Panchatantras. Yet, children who loved the Panchatantra stories become idiots who detest them because they are so removed from the reality. They hate themselves for loving to be idealists who wanted to transform the world into a better place for everyone they loved. Instead, they become realists who create the image that they can transform the world for the idealist who still dream, or for the corp fat-cats who want more jingle in the pockets. So, these children begin to live many lives that end in cul-de-sacs.
What if we live only once and our ancestors were more prophets than mystics? So, when they were talking of the janumas, were they predicting that all of us will go through many roles and live as many people in one lifetime? Doesn’t that make death nirvana? I am afraid that I will end up on the spaceship that left in the Hitchhikers. I don’t fit in here. I’m not panicking. I can live with that. The problem is that others can’t…they are trying to turn me into their reflections, when they themselves are reflections. I yearn for my nirvana.
PS: Second year was much better :)
PPS: I have included some pics of the campus because other than a select few people, that was the best thing about the place, and I had to show something positive, right?