This and That

  • What has to be done to get out of an extended Researcher’s block? It was last in August that I put my mind to some meaningful work. That meaningful work (OK, meaningful according to me), was not liked my the adviser, and I was left defending the merits of the idea that I had. In vain. What I did, however, opened up a few questions, the answer to which I feel is already there in the meaningful work that I presented, and mostly which are negative. The adviser thinks otherwise, and I was to work on the otherwise. Sadly, I attacked it with much less conviction, and slowly got bored with it and all the false positives. Later, an industry partner suggested a new problem, and I was asked to toy around with it, which I am doing, but more than 3 weeks of toying around and reading papers have not given me much confidence or direction or idea on the new problem. Lack of implementable ideas has led to a huge loss of enthusiasm and motivation, and I dread every meeting date with the adviser. Tomorrow is one.
  • The countdown is now at 75 days, and I am super excited to go to India. But this leaves me feeling homesick ever so often.  Add that to lack of motivation, and you will get a sad, moody and irritated me, who has been sitting at home for some days, even in midweek, doing nothing but brooding. Such days are wake up, feel sad and sorry and pissed off at getting no ideas during the sleep, decide to sleep in, sleep all day, browse internet in the evening and sleep again. There have been days in which I have skipped food too.
  • I was sleeping soundly. Amma calls me and wakes me up. I wave a hand at her and say let me sleep for a little while more. The heat has made me sweat, and the sweat has made my shirt stick to the bed. I turn over on the bed, and the date strikes me. 12th January. Oh no! Only one more week in India. Why do the holidays have to pass so quickly. I decide to get up, have the filter coffee and breathe in every moment of the remaining holidays. I wake up, and realize that it was just a dream. It is still October, but the apartment people have turned on the heating unnecessarily. The sweat made it more real. I try to sleep a little more, mainly anticipating that the me being at home, enjoying dream will show again. Instead, the show is a pathetic re-run of how unproductive I have been all week, and a reminder that on the other side of the week, there is the meeting. I wake up, watch NFL, eat left-overs (which was very good leftover, of the elaborate dosa, sambhar and pongal cooking that I had done the previous day), watch more NFL, gulp a strong cup of filter coffee (the perfect formula for which I decided was the one I just used), eat a lot of maggi, watch the SNF between Colts and Titans, in the middle of which I decide I was too filthy, take a shower, camp in front of the TV and doze off as the match peters towards a boring one-sided end. Suddenly, I realized that I have lived one of the Sundays in Mumbai. And, I get into a mixed mood of nostalgic happiness and sadness.
  • Spoke with Sashi today for a long time. He has dived into the marriage thingy. Shriram is to get married by December. That leaves me leading me in the bachelor brigade.
  • Leaving for the Yellowstone trip tomorrow. It is really cold there. I am looking forward to the place. The photos from there remind me of Alien planet imaginations that I used to have.  I was looking forward to driving there, but with me, the only time I can be sure of driving happily is when I get my own car. Anshu and Suku would not let me in Oregon, California had too many cars and drivers, I was scared of driving in Chicago downtown, and now, I don’t get a chance in Montana. I am going to buy a car soon.
  • Okay, got to clean up the kitchen and pack, and practice my defense at tomorrow’s meeting.
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  1. #1 by Vinay on October 13, 2009 - 5:34 am

    Start whining to your advisor. It’s high time I complete things. Parents back home, expecting me start earning quickly, in Alberta, a PhD is done in 3years, etc. And voila! Your advisor should put you on the fast track! Trust me, it works most of the times

    • #2 by Kaushik on October 23, 2009 - 10:43 am

      Fast track for what? I need to show some progress to be even considered for fast track…I have totally lost it, I think

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