San Francisco, California

The first part of this blog will be about an uncharacteristically light topic - superstitions and paranoia. In the rest, I will unload thoughts that have consumed me in the last two months.

Here’s a bunch of superstitions that I grew up surrounded by. I also rate these on a scale of 1 to 3, with 1 being an uncool superstition (sad, who even cares, etc) and 3 being should-be-a-meme superstition (how is this a thing, annoying, mildly humorous).

  1. Do not shave or get a haircut on Tuesdays, Thursdays, or Saturdays. In India, many barbershops are closed on Tuesdays (yay astrology). This was hugely inconvenient for me because obviously I’d only remember my hair on those very days. In other news, I butchered my second haircut last month. 😅 My whole family got a good laugh. [3/3]
  2. Do not leave flip flops upside down. Honestly, seeing footwear upside down is quite unsettling. [2/3]
  3. Spotting a widow while leaving your house is bad luck. [1/3]
  4. Do not jump over the legs of someone lying down. This would stop their height growth unless of course you jump back over. [3/3]
  5. Do not shake your legs while sitting on a stool. In parts of India, this suggests idleness, while in Japan, this means you’ll be haunted by a deity of poverty. [1/3]
  6. Eyebrow hair strands resting on your cheekbone are “free wishes.” To make a wish, place the strand on the dorsal side of your hand and blow on it. [1/3]
  7. Do not open an umbrella indoors. This cracks me up. [3/3]
  8. Surely no one cares about this one but I’m still paranoid about watching sports, especially cricket. There was a time when I truly believed that even taking a quick one-minute restroom break could lead to fall of wickets. [2/3]
  9. Teen tigada, kaam bigada. Literally the opposide of “third time’s the charm.” I’m confused now, do I go straight to the fourth try or what? [3/3]
  10. Using a pair of scissors without cutting anything is bad omen. [1/3]
  11. Hiccups = someone is thinking about you. 😍 [3/3]
  12. A cow mooing at night suggests that someone is going to die soon. If you are curious about cows in India, I recommend reading The Milk Lady of Bangalore by Shoba Narayan. [2/3]
  13. Do not touch anyone right after attending a funeral. Also, you have to bathe and wash your clothes. [2/3]

What’s on my mind?

The past two months have been a ride. I have so many unanswerable questions. Going with the flow is hard, and so is being patient.

Nowadays I think about why I am in the US. Is it sunk cost? Or the freedom? Or money? What about friendships? In 2019, for the first time, I admitted to myself that I’d prefer to live here long-term, if possible. Now, I don’t even know. This administration is cruel at best. One blow after another to foreigners. I hate the American arrogance. Am I a hypocrite?

Two years ago, I had an opportunity to intern at a renowned tech company. I declined their offer because they had recently faced sexual harassment allegations that shook the entire industry. To be fair, I never deluded myself into thinking that my Silicon Valley company would be any different. It still sucks when something like this happens around you.

A few weeks back, two former employees (Black women) spoke up about how they were racially discriminated against and treated unfairly at my current workplace. This didn’t receive a ton of media coverage but on the inside, everything seems to be on fire. There’s a lot for me to learn and unlearn. What’s my responsibility and how can become an absolute cherry to work with?

There’s other events that either I’m still taking in or are too personal. Thanks to Andy Puddicombe, I am becoming more curious about my mind.

The good things

  • I am addicted to GeoWizard. This guy can tell countries apart by their roadside foliage.
  • Money Heist is an underrated show. 👺
  • Recently, I hung out with more than two people for the first time in months.
  • I’m so excited about the present and the future! Added to my “Impossible List” - write a fiction book and show a friend from outside India around my home town.

Thankful for my sister Golu and my friends Pragya and Taylor.

Some quotes

[…] don’t avoid honest, clear conflict. It will get you the best car price, the higher salary, and the largest donation. It will also save your marriage, your friendship, and your family. One can only be an exceptional negotiator, and a great person, by both listening and speaking clearly and empathetically. - Chris Voss, Never Split the Difference

Out of all the unimportant things, football is the most important. - Pope John Paul II

Apologize quickly and sincerely and then move on.

– Yash

PS - If your lucky number is 7, live a little and choose something unique.