Friday, January 7, 2011

Does Size really matter?



Scientific studies claim that our brains are shrinking. In a world of inflated egos where a family of four requires a 27 storey mansion, Gen Now takes pride in their thimble sized devices while our dreams have assumed mammoth proportions – size indeed is a conflicting issue. Is big always better? We are still groping in the dark about the implications of this evolutionary trend but do our shrinking brains actually indicate that we are getting dumber?

Our young live in a copy-and-paste world and see nothing wrong in it. Life’s greatest mysteries are just a Google search away. Protests are registered through online campaigns – click to fight child abuse, free an activist, save the seal, stop global warming. We do not let such trivialities come in between us and our comforts, we let facebook take care of it. People are battling Farmville addiction, fighting with angry birds on their mobiles, having cyber-sex and breaking up on the social networking sites. Is something really wrong with us or are we just evolving?

Let’s take a few case studies.

Case 1 - Our Desi Livingstone, Dr Binayak Sen. The man, a gold medallist from Christian Medical College had a bright, moolah laden future laid out for him. He could have set up a Nursing home, ill treated the wealthy and made a killing out of it. And what does this strange man do instead? Goes off to the jungles and dedicates his life treating the tribals. And here’s when it gets dumber. Not happy with playing Santa Claus to the poor and doling out medicines for them, he goes ahead and starts dabbling with human rights. Yeesh! Does he not know the poor have no rights! Imagine fighting for their right to live with dignity. He should have just let these chhota people living on the fringes, die of malaria, cholera, hunger. Who asked him to fight on behalf of nobody’s children, when he could have led an air-conditioned life, watched NDTV with his nightcap and joined some online campaign to ease his conscience. In this David V/s Goliath battle – size did matter.

Case 2 - Our much loved Celebrities. Says who, celebrities need to be cerebral. If they need to feel nerdy despite their pea sized brains, they can always sport librarian glasses and quote from the Mahatma. Like our high on life, Ms Lohan has revealed in her New Year's resolution - "Today is the first day of the rest of my life 'The future depends on what we do in the present.' -Mahatma Gandhi" I hope she’s aware of his celibacy fixation– they didn’t call him the Mahatma for nothing!

Here are a few more pearls of wisdom from our much idolized –

So where’s the Cannes film festival held this year…Christina Aguilera

Internet is a great way to get on the net….Bob Dole
 
 I owe a lot to my parents, especially my mother & father….Greg Norman

AIDS is just a little more worrisome than a common cold and it’s curable, so just go out there & get it done….Kajol

Smoking kills. If you are killed, you’ve lost a very important part of your life…..Brooke Shields

And yet we idolize them?

Case 3 - Mainstream Media is relentlessly dumbing down its readers, listeners and viewers. A national daily devotes an entire article to tweet nothings exchanged between a ballsy woman and a cricketer whose spinning balls spell trouble. Kangana’s implants, Amir’s Dog, Kareena’s weighty drama grabs national headlines. Rakhi Sawant dispenses Insaaf on TV and a dozen demented women bare their claws over a Rahul Mahajan. A past her prime Ms Anderson’s entry in Big Boss sends the nation into a tizzy - of course size matters. Switch on India TV and you immediately want to flee the country to someplace far far away – maybe even Reykjavik. Camera mein kalaa jadoo….Khatarnaak batak…Khoon peene wali nurse…And the anchor is looking earnest, trying to scare the living daylights out of you. It always works.

Case 4 - The government definitely thinks we are dumb. It taxes our income, expenditure, gifts and assets, with the assurance that it will be utilized for development. It is used for development but of a different kind - the minister’s many bank accounts in the Caribbean islands. To ensure our netas get a truly global outlook, we fund their trips to Germany en-famille to study the drainage system intricately. The CM’s MIL gets a flat, the MLA’s son’s career goes sky rocketing. And we love our politicians so much that we gleefully pay millions for their Z class security. While we the aam admi, pay bribes to get even a faulty meter replaced, do not expect police help because they are too busy taking care of our VIPs. We are content at cracking jokes at the ineptitude of the representatives we elected. So who’s dumb?

There are some who may argue that the shrinking brain should be of no concern to us. After all, not many of us utilize our grey matter to think. Some of us use our hearts, while many use the below-the-belt appendage! So who cares about the size, big or small.


67 comments:

  1. Ha ha ha!!!
    Where do you find inspiration to write such stuff!!!
    "Khoon peene waali Batak!!"
    Ha ha ha aha ha!!

    "Chain se sona hai to ab jaag jao!!!" :P

    'Great post!

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  2. great post indeed, seriously need to ponder, really striving fr size as banished our morality, take on dumbass celebrites and indian news channels was OMGROFLOL,bt at the same time fighting fr human science was nerve raising.\really wot we r doing..
    do tell me wot to do, i mean other than blog dat stuff here n make people aware, wat else to be done

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  3. I think there is a very thin line between fake and reality. Dr. Sen’s work showed the real condition/ misery of those who ‘also are Indians’ and they locked him up and booked him in a fake case.

    While on the other hand, those who talk in air and know little believe that what they say/do is actually is true! After all they were celebrity guest in shows like ‘Kya aap Panchvi Paas sey tez hain’? It never is about testing how much they know, else it would revealing the real picture.

    Knowledge levels have shrinked in society at large and that hits the most to those who are already hurt.

    The post strikes the right cord. Bang on!

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  4. There is a disconnect between celebrities and cerebral...lol. They use all the other appendages but grey matter... Enjoyable. Smile on my face early morning..The sun is smiling too.

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  5. @Case 2: Who can forget everybody's favorite dumb celebrity, former US president George W. Bush, whose verbal gaffes have given lexicons the world over a new pop-culture addition: "bushism".

    With all due respect to American Presidents, presidents and Americans, Bush did say a lot of funny things, enough to keep the Idiot American Stereotype going for a while.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bushism

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  6. We are getting dumber for sure, there is enough evidence you have cited there. Your post has touched upon a multitude of issues, we are grappling with. A generations whose value systems is founded on me and might, who is competitive and has an urge to succeed like never before yet falls prey to instant gratification and instant opinions at the same time.

    I thought getting Lohan, Brooke, Aguilera along with Kajol in this post was immaterial, the other aspects you touch upon are real serious issues and you have been saracastically gracious in showing thumbs down.

    Liked it .. when do we get next (so much for value of patience)

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  7. BRAVO!!!
    Brilliant post!!
    This one is up there!!

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  8. Azad...India TV is good for comic relief.

    Vineet..It is the excessive dependence on technology that's dumbing us down. We just don't exert our brains anymore. And television is making it worse.

    Delhizen...Dr Sen's case is testament to our times. Charity is permissible but educating our poor, making them aware of their rights is a punishable crime.

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  9. Alka...The women especially make a killing out of acting dumb. Yea and loving the sun :)

    Rindo..I deliberately avoided Bushisms...his gaffes are too well known and legendary.

    Mayank...True, we constantly need reassurance that we are good. We are living in insecure times. But there a brave few who move against all adds, unmindful of opinions.

    And point taken about the unnecessary quotes.

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  10. Wow! The post hits bang on target.
    No doubt, Only u create such standards of writings 4 yourself!
    I keep thinking about the points u keep..


    "The problem is not that people are taxed too little, the problem is that government spends too much. " - Ronald Reagan



    You prove this point so well :)
    kudos !

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  11. magiceye...Yahooo!!!

    Mani..Now you give me the quote! Hell it makes so much sense.

    And glad you appreciate the write-up.

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  12. ".True, we constantly need reassurance that we are good. We are living in insecure times. But there a brave few who move against all adds, unmindful of opinions."

    Moving against the flow is not always the right thing, standing out for sake of doing it a la Ms Arundhati Roy would be disastrous, what intrigues me is what drives the society towards such degeneration, collective degradation of intelligence, destruction of social fabric, lack of leadership.. wonder!!

    "And point taken about the unnecessary quotes."

    Don't take me too seriously, as someone said you writings are 'up there'.

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  13. generated some deep thoughts. cross counter sarcasm at its humorous best, at certain points :D reading celeb trash quotes was fun :)
    yes... acceptance to everything that has been said, is there a possible way out?

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  14. mayank..Of course I"ll take your opinion seriously. I'm writing for you, this is not my personal diary :)

    Pulkit...Our gray matter is dying a slow death from disuse. We are constantly looking for easier ways out.
    Like I said we should stop watching those trashy reality shows, there are injurious to our well being.
    I think I just coined a new slogan..the TV made me a net junkie :D

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  15. Ah! good read...the post hits the right chord!

    huh..Celebrities and their social messages...script ki tarah ussey bhi mug karthey hongey...

    Brilliant...indeed size doesnt matter!

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  16. wow here we go again...

    I seriously HATE when a celebrity endorses something , they dont have a clue most of the time wht they are doing.. But I guess we live in a age where most people will only follow a charity cause a Celebrity is there .. Hence he reason to rope them in

    I am really impressed with Dr. Binayak Sen .. WOWOW and kudos to him.. i hope more people join him

    and yeah hats to our GOVERNMENT tooo :)

    Bikram's

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  17. Hi,
    Well after reading your post ..I agree with you point that there is shrinkage in brain usage , but who is responsible for this ..we our-self ..we always choose the short path , there the thought process and grey matter takes a backseat ..and in the process the usage become almost Nil.

    So , its upto us how we want to be ...and it depends more on approach toward life and that directly reflect upon what we do everyday.

    Nice post Purba.

    You have definitely used 90 % brain.

    take care.

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  18. Hm.. it may be the pollution that kills grey cells.. or global warming? (its a trend to blame everything on GW)

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  19. :-D Great quotes... lol at "ill treated the wealthy." Enjoyed reading!! Now I know where to place the blame for my blunders!

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  20. LOL! Great post! Enjoyed reading it! Especially case 3..

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  21. You are talking here about the "thin red line".

    you step ahead there is a serpent , you step back there is a mad dog .....the thin red line.but we all are to blame for creating this thin red line ...dont know if this comment makes sense but this is exactly what your thoughts prick me to think now.

    stop people from thinking too much ha ha ...its winter...(kiddin)
    Purba good one again.

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  22. Hey Purba, don't use much of your brain, because excessive usage may rust your brains and the crust formation may lead to increased rate of shrinking.

    and hey Purba, just do the opposite of what I just said. :P

    For now, I'd stick to facebook, but I don't accept any invites to 'Causes' or 'Farmville' et al. Though I liked Slapster on orkut, while it was new. Real time battle? we are already in one.

    Nice post.

    Blasphemous Aesthete

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  23. Huh...when I started reading the first para I thought, ok she is acting her age now. "Hamare zamaane mein hum yeh karte they...but this computer generation...blah blah..." :P
    But interesting case studies. Any plans of writing a thesis for PhD.?
    :P

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  24. I realized that I'm dumb too. :(

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  25. super writeup..... :)) as always :)))
    Happy weekend!

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  26. A very well written post...

    Celebs and brains... Aren't they antonyms...

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  27. The label under the post published made me more curious. You really are sarcastic Ma'am. The post was Sarcasti'licious :P

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  28. Always Happy...Our Indian celebs are smart, they stick to dispensing diet gyaan.

    Bikram..Especially Shahrukh and Big B...they are willing to endorse anything, from banyan to dant manjaan to even ball point pens!

    Vivek...Research suggests we use only 10% of our brain.

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  29. Maitreyee...Thanks sweetheart :)

    Harish...LOL...why not foreign hand?

    Giribala... Yupp can now conveniently blame evolution :P

    Sanchita...So glad.

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  30. RK...Seriously winters do make us lazy. Been long since I stood straight ;)

    Blasphemous Aesthete...Do you know your online moniker can get you in trouble in Pakistan?

    Prats..I am acting my age and you are acting yours :P

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  31. Nethra...Have you become a celebrity??

    Bhawna...You have a fun weekend too.

    Tanishka...Celebs are smart enough to act dumb.

    Prateek...Dripping with sarcasm eh?

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  32. Awesome! This is certainly the product of keen observation skills, instantly getting updated on all news items and ofcourse your ability to think through and reading between lines of each and every happenning around. Great post Purba. First time here, and I liked it.

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  33. You said what is needed to be heard by everyone out there. The government is taking all of us down the hill and we happily sitting with closed eyes. Phew.. Nice one.

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  34. A hard hitting one. You say Goverment thinks we are dumb, I say we are also
    mute spectators. Protests are not only registered through online campaigns but also we have learn to lit candles!

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  35. What a post! Loved the dumb celebrity quotes, especially those of Kajol and Brooke Shields. If they can talk so dumb about serious health issues, god spare us from their wisdom!

    I agree about us being dumb, dumber and dumbest for electing the reps and putting them in power. Look at all the scams running into lakhs of crores and still the government is sitting on its moral high horse. Media celebrities manage to get out of sticky situations and continue acting the self righteous divas. One can go on and on. And oh yes, India TV is a great one for comic relief :)

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  36. Thank You for letting me know, I'll don a disguise if I go there.
    But I can't think of the reason why. hmm?

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  37. Victor...We bloggers are always nosing around for inspiration :) And thank you for following the blog.

    Deepika...We are getting too complacent.

    SR...The non violent, non problematic way to register protests. But can't end up the Rang De Basanti way either.

    Zephyr...We should have a "negative vote" option as suggested by TN Seshan.

    B L A S P H E M O U S....need I say more?

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  38. Lol!!..I can't believe Kajol actually said that.. :D

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  39. Big fan of sarcasm and totally enjoyed your post... second your views. Great post.

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  40. I tried to make the word unique like unputdownable :P

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  41. Ur posts always leave me dumbfounded.. and I leave without commenting..
    I love the way you take serious topics and talk abt them as a matter of fact without sounding preachy!

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  42. Ana-treek...And she is supposed to be one of the brainier ones...Tch Tch..

    Blasphemous Aesthete ...:))

    Ashish..Thank you

    Prateek..HA

    S...That is the intent, preachy can be very off putting.

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  43. Excellent post. Pretty much a summary of what is bugging the average Indian today.

    But remember, Karl Marx once said, "Religion is the opiate of the masses".

    Religion has long been relegated to the background. Today, the new opiates are: sports, movies and 24 hour news about sports and movies. Brain sizes have nothing to do with how we behave. We are fundamentally lazy, and some people take advantage of that.

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  44. Good stuff, totally enjoyed reading it!

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  45. Another nice work..About Govt and Police,nobody bothers any more.Last week there was a major traffic jam in Kochi..And the cleaner from a private bus came out and cleared it..Wonder where the traffic guys were??

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  46. Desi Babu... We all seek a shortcut to Nirvana :)

    Aneeta...Thank you

    Blue Lotus..We have become a nation of jugaad, We have learnt to survive against all odds.

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  47. I am going to search for meaning in my life...i will google it

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  48. My first time here and I should tell you, I totally enjoyed reading your post. You really have the art of telling the truth on its face. Nice post.

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  49. menon...LMAO

    anubharat..So glad you liked it.

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  50. Hi Purba,

    Pallavi (delhizen) recommended me to read your blog and the first post I read has floored me none the less. Your writing style is amazing.

    Although I don't get along well with the negatives mentioned in the post (not that I'm oblivious to it, I just dont like mentioning it.)

    Pal also recommended me to feature you in my interview series. WIth your permission, would you be interested for an interview through email?

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  51. @ALL: So when are we coming down to the street and start working?

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  52. Great post ! started and couldn't took my eyes off till the last. carry on. cheers !! :-)

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  53. Mayur...I have read your comments on Prateek's blog and am aware of your great love for the Indian Railways :))
    And am looking forward to the interview. Thank you, flattered.

    Sam...The latest issue of Newsweek is carrying a cover story on " Grow your mind". Rather intuitive, isn't it?

    Pranab...Thank you :))

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  54. Interesting. Interviewing some one I don't know will take some time though. Being a Virgo should help. :-)

    I have your email address. You can expect an email soon.

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  55. Its said our brain receive some billion bits of information. Its the same for everyone. The only difference between an intelligent and dumb person is the processing of this information.

    With Google, and (too) smartphones we are gradually losing our capacity to process information, because there are already so many automatic tools to do the same.

    And its happening because we have stressed too much on being like or better than our neigbour. So i totally agree we are getting dumber as a collective world.

    WRT Dr Binayak Sen, i guess staying and helping poor people never gives him a chance to fully utilize his intellectual capacity. Had he worked and researched more, maybe he could have done better stuff for world. So its an analogy of why collective IQ of world is on a decline.

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  56. your posts show the richness of your knowledge about various issues, English vocabulary and a fluent writing skill which keep the reader interested in reading ..
    I think I will read almost all of your posts today :)

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  57. Mayur....Ohh, you are a Virgo too?

    Pranay...I think you need to read up on Dr Sen, before commenting.

    Kunjan...Flattered and don't stress your eyes too much.

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  58. "Today is the first day of the rest of my life 'The future depends on what we do in the present.' -Mahatma Gandhi"

    Excellent post Purba.

    I write technical posts and I know writing consistently is not easy. I appreciate your efforts for building this wonderful blog around us.

    Thank You.

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  59. All too true. We never actually stop and think before doing or saying anything that may significantly affect what happens on a large scale.

    Loved the part about the media and the celebrities. I knew they were dumb. I just did not realise the magnitude of their idiocracy.

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  60. Purba: Loved this one.. Keep writing..:D

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  61. Serious SATIRE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!U are yet to send me your breakfast recipe!I'll possibly ask my wife to prepare the breakfast u suggest and see if I can be half as good as you ....cheers ...keep it up.

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  62. perfect composition of a cry against idiotism..

    we are surrounded by hypocracy and wonder why we really like it...

    gr8 concerns

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  63. Absolutely terrific combination of words with a great humor.. I am totally in love reading your posts :)

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  64. Smoking kills. If you are killed, you’ve lost a very important part of your life…..Brooke Shields

    Was hilarious!

    Good stuff! I am hooked!

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  65. Good Lord! Did Kajol really say that? Well not that anyone cares what she thinks about, but in our country, stupidity is highly entertained. great post once again :)

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