We are nearing the end of the year now, and this is my 52nd post of the year. Also, I have been writing non-stop, at a steady rate, for seven and a half years. It’s time, I think, to take a break. So I am bidding my readers – and I know there are at least several hundred – au revoir, though not adieu. And since the festive season is coming up, have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, all, wherever on this planet you might be located.
I have nearly 370 posts on this blog now. I am glad and proud of having acquired a readership spread across the world, including a few hundred regular visitors. This blog has helped me to renew and deepen some old connections, and make some worthy new friends. I am especially glad that this year the visit count has accelerated: there have been more than 50,000 page views since January, and five of the ten most-read posts were written this year itself. All to the good…
Now, as I wrote in a recent post, I am beginning to falter. Firstly, because no one can endlessly think of new and interesting things to say. Secondly because I have already created a wide and varied corpus of musing here that serious readers should explore much more assiduously than they have till date: few people can claim that they have read all, far fewer still that they remember everything and have reflected upon everything – I know, because if they had, their manner of interacting with me, by phone, chat, email or face to face would have changed greatly by now, and permanently. Thirdly, because I hate to think that I am being forced to repeat myself, simply because some people won’t listen and remember and take to heart. Fourthly, I wait until I am satisfied that the waiting has been long enough, and the paucity of sensible comments on anything I write, in sharp contrast to the number of visits, makes me think I have waited long enough: it’s not a nice feeling having to talk to a wall (one of the primary reasons I quit journalism in favour of teaching: the latter gave me live feedback every day). Fifthly, because this year I really poured myself out, and there’s a point where one needs to tell oneself ‘Stop!’
Besides, after what I wrote in the last post, everything else would sound silly and trivial to me, whether I write about the passage of Nelson Mandela or the recent Supreme Court judgment on homosexuality or the arrest of an Indian diplomat in New York. I leave that to people who have all the time in the world for trifles…I want people to engage with me henceforth, if they want to at all, because posts like that one have resonated somewhere deep and essential inside them. arasikesu rasasya nivedanang/ shirosi ma likho, ma likho, ma likho.
I am not going to stop writing here. I am only going to become irregular. Henceforth, only when the fancy seizes me. After a quarter million page views, I don’t have to prove anything to myself, and those who are really interested will wait, and prod, and talk to me.
So also with relatives, so-called friends, and old acquaintances. As I myself teach, all a man has to do to go to sleep in peace at the end of each day is to look his conscience in the eye and reply to its question ‘Did you try all you could?’ as I can say, with total and calm confidence, ‘I did’. After now, the ball is in other people’s court. They want to keep in touch with me, they will abide by my terms. Otherwise, I am well rid.
Just one request, all. Don’t pretend what you don’t feel. Be it respect, love, or longing... faking is faking, and it hurts.