Do You Dedicate Time to Listen to Music, or Look at Photographs?

A compilation of thoughts I had about listening to music, looking at photographs and my new blog series on 'positivity'

A screen ‘less’ weekend

I spent this weekend with just 5 hours of screen time in total (for both the days), which is 1/4th of my normal screen time during weekends. 

I was too bored looking at a screen all day. So, this Saturday, I decided to spend the weekend without looking at my phone or the computer. 

So I spent my time reading, writing my thoughts down on my notebook, and sitting and listening to music. For a moment, I felt like I was reliving my childhood days.

When I was a kid and lived in Pondicherry, I did not have a lot of friends around. All I had was the company of myself. I used to read a book, draw something or listen to the Sri Lankan radio that used to broadcast an amazing collection of Tamil songs. 

When I thought about it, we’ve come a long way when it comes to listening to music. 

In the 1960s and 70s, when my parents were young, my mom and her brothers used to stand next to the radio box eagerly awaiting the next song. My maternal uncle, they used to say, used to place his ear near the speaker to order to enjoy every note of the song in order to not miss any details. 

When I was young, my dad would get the audio cassettes of a movie that has good songs and we would all sit in front of the cassette player and listen to all the songs. 

Now, we hardly give attention to the song or the music. Most times, we don’t even care about the song that is playing in the background. All we need is some kind of music to keep us going. Music today became more of white noise. We stopped dedicating our time to listen to music. 

When I did that this weekend, it was so refreshing. I sat on the chair in my study, reclined backward, closed my eyes, and listened to a collection of 90s A.R.Rahman songs. It brought back so many memories from my childhood. 

It felt so good! 

From now on, I’ve decided to set distraction-free time once a week to listen to music. A really good thing that came out of this weekend. 

Are we seeing the pictures we clicked?

When we were having dinner on Saturday, my mom asked me if she can see the pictures from the ceremony that happened a couple of days before my wedding. My uncle took those photos on his smartphone and sent it to me on WhatsApp. And, since it had been almost two years, those pictures got buried under a huge pile of memes, funny cat pictures, and GIFs.

Today morning, I spent a good amount of time looking for it, but I couldn’t find the pictures. When I asked my uncle, he said he did not know where the picture was as he changed his phone recently. 

Today, we click a million pictures for every occassion. But, we forget about those pictures after we click it. We hardly go back and see those pictures. When was the last time you thought “Oh! That trip with my friends was amazing! Let me go and see those pictures!”. 

With technology at our palms, we lost the excitement of looking at pictures. One of the things we did as kids when we went to a relative’s place or met our friends was seeing pictures from their latest trip. It would be a bonding event. You can hear them talk about the story behind each photo, you get to share yours, have a few good laughs, and enjoy the evening. 

But, today, people go on a trip and directly post a picture from the location. They forget to enjoy the moment, and we lose all those quality family time. 

One thing I do is, whenever I visit a new city, or a visit a touristy place, I hire one of those tourist photographers (who would be walking around with their cameras and handy printers) to take a picture and give a hard copy. 

This way, I get a physical copy - a souvenir from the trip. 

I think everyone should at least print the pictures that are close to our hearts.

I would want to go back to the time where we all laughed at the old pictures, listen to the family passionately talk about their childhood, their first trip with friends, and the time they almost missed the train. 

Those were the moments that bring us close as a family and gives life its meaning. 

Introducing ‘Project Positivity’

I recently thought “What is endangered amidst all this adversity?”

The answer was positivity.

I understand that these are unprecedented times. And, as responsible humans, we should raise our voices against injustice whenever necessary. 

But, the news channels and social media are pushing it to the extreme, especially the COVID-19 situation. Nobody is bringing us the one thing that is much needed now - Hope. 

We need a ray of hope, a pinch of positivity to tell us that everything is going to be okay. 

So, I am thinking of writing an eight-part blog series which I am calling “The Positivity Project”.

Each blog post will feature real-life stories that make you happy, feel positive, and give you hope. 

I am looking to talk to people who have made/making a difference by creating an impact on society. The goal is to bring these stories out. 

If you have friends, colleagues, or family members who have an inspiring story and if you think that story can inspire a lot of people, share their details with me. 

You can email me at karthikpasupathy@outlook.com