Wondering Wanderer

What a wanderer could wonder about...

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

something so Right, something so Wrong

I feel something so right
By doing the wrong thing
And I feel something so wrong
By doing the right thing...
-- (Counting Stars, OneRepublic)
Alas, the story of our lives.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

The function of the university

Oh, wouldn't that have been nice, if the following was what we would have gained from our education?

"What you have done here at the university, if you spent your time well, is to cultivate the intelligence and sensitivity you will need to meet those challenges, and thus to make life better and fuller and richer across a wide spectrum -- both for yourselves and for those whose lives you will touch and shape and improve. That is the true freedom, the positive freedom to achieve things, to build a life that can pretend to happiness." -- Lanier Anderson

"The function of the university is not simply to teach breadwinning, or to furnish teachers for the public schools, or to be a centre of polite society; if is, above all, to be the organ of that fine adjustment between real life and the growing knowledge of life, an adjustment from which forms the secret of civilization.
The riddle of existence is the college curriculum that was laid before the Pharaohs, that was taught in the groves by Plato, that formed the trivium and quadrivium, and is to-day laid before the freedmen’s sons by Atlanta University. And this course of study will not change; its methods will grow more deft and effectual, its content richer by toil of scholar and sight of seer; but the true college will ever have but one goal,—not to earn meat, but to know the end and aim of that life which meat nourishes." -- W.E.B. DuBois

(Frome the course The Art of Living, at the Stanford University)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Poisoned marrow

I wished I had a pair of white shoes,
To wear them and run…
Just run,
From coast to coast, back and forth,
and shed all the sorrows that are pinking my marrow.

Hey you, bitterness,
How did you get in?
Who let you stay?
You are not welcome!

I'll run…
Just run,
From coast to coast, back and forth,
For as long as it takes,
to shed all the sorrows that are pinking my marrow.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The eccentric behavior of my not really full sized aortic pumps!

My aortic pumps is (are?) behaving very strange lately. As soon as I sit or lie down, it starts crashing itself into my chest and my back. Like it wants to break free of my ribs and fly away. Like this shell doesn't have enough room for it to grow. And this goes on until absolute exhaustion.

Now here is my dilemma: when I am tired I want to sit/lie down to rest and reinforce. But if I do that before the state of absolute exhaustion, my heart starts beating like battle drums to makes sure I will eventually reach that state. I may as well let it break free...!

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Mysteries of female life

Over the mysteries of female life there is drawn a veil, best left undisturbed. -- Louisa May Alcott (Little Women)

It's a blessing to have sister(s)/friend(s) to share some of these mysteries.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


It's unfortunate that we are trained to have linear minds!

"People take the longest possible paths, digress to numerous dead ends, and make all kinds of mistakes. Then historians come along and write summaries of this messy, nonlinear process and make it appear like a simple, straight line." -- Dean Kamen

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Flames of curiosity and winds of despair

Curiosity and despair, there is a constant battle between them. The first intrigues, excites, inflames. The second scatters and stifles the flames like a cold harsh breeze, like a gale. An endless cycle, the ephemeral joy of "veni, vidi, vici", followed by a cast down soul.

Friday, August 13, 2010

The Sorrow of Vanities

In me, the sorrow of vanities creeps,
In you, an arrogant caring beyond my cope subsists.
In me, desire constantly screams,
In you, reluctance sternly reveals.

A very loose translation of Hamid Mossadegh's آرزوی نقش بر آب

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Fuming howls

My home is on fire, a heart rending fire
It's burning everything, everywhere
The curtains and the carpets
The wraps and the wefts

خانه ام آتش گرفته ست، آتشی جانسوز
هر طرف می سوزد این آتش
پرده ها و فرشها را، تارشان با پود

من به هر سو می دوم گریان
در لهیب آتش پر دود
وز میان خنده هایم تلخ و خروش گریه ام ناشاد
از دورن خسته ی سوزان
می کنم فریاد، ای فریاد! ای فریاد

خانه ام آتش گرفته ست، آتشی بی رحم
همچنان می سوزد این آتش
نقشهایی را که من بستم به خون دل
بر سر و چشم در و دیوار
در شب رسوای بی ساحل

وای بر من، سوزد و سوزد
غنچه هایی را که پروردم به دشواری
در دهان گود گلدانها
روزهای سخت بیماری

از فراز بامهاشان، شاد
دشمنانم موذیانه خنده های فتحشان بر لب
بر من آتش به جان ناظر
در پناه این مشبک شب

من به هر سو می دوم گریان
ازین بیداد
می کنم فریاد ای فریاد! ای فریاد

وای بر من، همچنان می سوزد این آتش
آنچه دارم یادگار و دفتر و دیوان
و آنچه دارد منظر و ایوان

من به دستان پر از تاول
این طرف را می کنم خاموش
وز لهیب آن روم از هوش
ز آندگر سو شعله برخیزد ، به گردش دود
تا سحرگاهان، که می داند
که بود من شود نابود

خفته اند این مهربان همسایگانم
شاد در بستر
صبح از من مانده بر جا
مشت خاکستر

وای، آیا هیچ سر بر می کنند از خواب
مهربان همسایگانم از پی امداد
سوزدم این آتش بیدادگر بنیاد
می کنم فریاد، ای فریاد! ای فریاد
(فریاد - مهدی اخوان ثالث)

Friday, June 04, 2010


چه خوش است حال مرغي كه قفس نديده باشد
چه نكوتر آنكه مرغي ز قفس پريده باشد
پر و بال ما بريدند و در قفس گشودند
چه رها، چه بسته مرغي كه پرش بريده باشد
(منسوب به صادق سرمد)

How happy is a bird who has never been caged.
How happier is a bird who has flown away from a cage.
Our feathers are cut and we are set free,
What difference does it make to a featherless bird, to be caged or uncaged?

Friday, May 28, 2010

The results don't always add up...

"Passion has a funny way of trumping logic." (Source: Nike ad)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Writing a resume

What needs to be done? Fill out the application and enclose the resume.

Regardless of the length of life, a resume is best kept short.

Concise, well-chosen facts are de rigueur. Landscapes are replaced by addresses, shaky memories give way to unshakable dates.

Of all your loves, mention only the marriage; of all your children, only those who were born.

Who knows you matters more than whom you know. Trips only if taken abroad. Memberships in what but without why. Honors, but not how they were earned.

Write as if you'd never talked to yourself and always kept yourself at arm's length.

Pass over in silence your dogs, cats, birds, dusty keepsakes, friends, and dreams.

Price, not worth, and title, not what's inside. His shoe size, not where he's off to, that one you pass off as yourself. In addition, a photograph with one ear showing, What matters is its shape, not what it hears. What is there to hear, anyway? The clatter of paper shredders.

--By Wisława Szymborska (Trans. By Stanisław Barańczak and Clare Cavanagh)

How familiar this sounds to many of us who have had to write resumes and write statement of purposes and what not. And the number of tips we have read and advices we have heard telling us the way we present ourselves is the most important thing. May be they don't say it, but it is implicit that how we show ourselves is more important than who we actually are! What a sad system.