I wish to remind my readers that I keep writing on my blogs with the express hope of creating an ever-expanding worldwide network of like-minded people who want to share thoughts, ideas, experiences, realizations, fancies, joys and woes as they all soldier through life, and keenly feel the lack of good people to talk with around them. Remember the cartoon which shows a man’s funeral service being attended by two people though he had in excess of 1700 ‘friends’ on Facebook: that defines the world we live in much more truthfully than most of us like to admit even to ourselves.
Now – and this bears repetition – that does not mean just regularly visiting and reading my blogs, not even commenting often and thoughtfully on my posts. It does not even only mean writing your own blogs now and then. It also means (especially if your are a blogger yourself-) writing fairly regularly: at least once a month. And above all it means visiting the blogs of others like yourself, who too write sensible stuff on a lot of subjects, and who too could do with more visitors and more comments. That means you should often read up some of the blogs I have linked on my blog roll (even Arani’s and Shubho’s and Rajarshi’s and Saptarshi’s, though they write so rarely), and tell them, in a friendly and helpful way, that you have liked what you read. We hug our own loneliness too dearly, and blame the world for being cold and unconcerned, but we forget too often and too easily that we are not setting better examples: it is not guaranteed that you will make good friends if you take the trouble to reach out and shake hands, but it certainly increases the probability!
Also, those who have made initial forays into my blogs and liked what they have read, them I’d strongly urge to look up older posts (the labels along the right hand side bar would help greatly). Shilpi is one reader who has literally read and digested everything, but I know a few others have been making the effort lately, and they have told me they are glad that they decided to do so. This is something I’d exhort two particular categories to try: those who are right now attending my classes (I consciously try to make these blogs extensions of both my classroom and my personality), and those, who, looking back over the years, feel a new urge to find out more about this particular Sir. They will discover that they probably don’t know another contemporary man who has tried so hard and so long to know himself and help others know him for what he really is, warts and all – and contrary to what someone hurt me badly by telling me a while ago, there is probably no better way of getting to know me really well if they are interested than reading up (both) my blogs thoroughly. It is, I repeat, a matter of being interested – as a lot of people not wholly unemployed have assured me, it’s not a question of being busy at all. Someone who is interested will always find time. All I shall add is that you might grow more interested as you go along.
And finally for now, it fills me with a never-ending sad wonder to think of so many old boys and girls who once came so close and have now fallen completely out of my life, often with utter suddenness and without so much as a by your leave. They include a considerable number of people who were enthusiastic readers and comment writers on my blogs even a few years ago. Today itself a few very young girls were asking me why I have become increasingly cynical, and why I assume that they too would go the same way by and by. I could only smile wryly. I have been working since I was little older than they, and now I am approaching fifty, and I have a very long memory, and so I simply cannot help it. The question that is constantly uppermost in my mind these days is ‘Who will cry when you die?’ along with ‘How genuine will those tears be, how long will they last?’