Why they went

from Why They Went
by Elizabeth Bradfield

that men might learn what the world is like at the spot where the sun does not decline in the heavens.

—Apsley Cherry-Garrard


That all we had to do was show up.

The sun rolled along the horizon. The light never left them.
The air from their warm mouths became diamonds.
And they longed for everything they did not have.
And they came home and longed again.

The Prime of Mr. Hirak Parikh

At exactly 2245 EST, which is 0815 IST, the digits on my clock will flip. No ordinary flip this one. Thirty rotations round the sun to be exact. In a sense it's just another day, right? That was pretty much the whole point of James Joyce's Ulysses (He did take his time to describe it though). The beauty of an ordinary day. Unlike Stephen Daedalus, I am trying to confront the possibility of an extraordinary day.

But why 30? Technically speaking it's the 30th anniversary, but my 31st birthday (0-based counting rocks!). On some level, it's special, though in terms of other units of time counted it's rather quotidian -
* it is 10,956 days, 15 hours, 45 minutes and 0 seconds or
* 29 years, 11 months, 29 days, 15 hours, 45 minutes
* 946,655,100 seconds
* 15,777,585 minutes
* 262,959 hours (rounded down)
* 1565 weeks (rounded down)
Courtesy: www.timeanddate.com

Then again, in term of SI units - another day to celebrate is 1E9 seconds on the planet which is about 31.6887646 years. So, somewhere in February 2012? For most people their billionth second on earth passes by in an instant, without fanfare or even the slightest notice. Given that our lives revolve on the order of days, this significant moment just passes by. I can take solace in the fact, that I am not that old, yet!

Still 30 is unique not because it signals the end of the 20s, or the end of my salad days, but for a curious fact that '30' is the largest possible product of first few consecutive primes.

The next possible combination is 1x2x3x5x7=210 which seems out of the realm of human longevity.

I take this as divine sign from the God of Numbers that this year is the prime(s) of my life. So the BIG '3 and 0' is really an important marker.

Goodbye 20s, Welcome Hirak 3.0.

Bad news: More grey hair
Good news: We are out of beta. Way, way out of beta...

Slowing Time

From ee cumming's 9

there are so many tictoc
clocks everywhere telling people
what toctic time it is for
tictic instance five toc minutes toc
past six tic

Top of a Monday morning and I get this poem in my inbox. Like most ee cummings (with him one is never quite sure of the orthography) poems, the real subject of the poem is always something else. Words and kisses are inserted like punctuation marks, making us re-read the lines again. Time slows. The tics and tocs in our head slow down. Then after reading the poem a third time it all makes sense: Who speaks in full sentences while kissing? And doesn't time slow down when you kiss?
because tic clocks toc don't make
a toctic difference
to kisskiss you and to
kiss me