Brownness

Tastings

This weekend turned out to be one of tastings, from whiskey to brunch to an actual desi movie (my first in a theater in 2 years). It can be easy to focus on the things I am not doing (not going to different destinations), but more and more I am also choosing more things to make myself uncomfortable (like signing up for the Long Beach Marathon next year), and looking into doing my first triathlon.

I am looking forward to a trip I have planned in January, and I can’t wait to see how this year ends. Between the uncertainty. the paradoxes of seeing the politics for many of my friends (and my own), I am even more determined to staying open, to learning, to getting curious.

On Friday, I ended an accountability call that has been going on for almost 6 years, and while I regret as to how I ended things, I don’t regret the decision because I became too judgmental and wanted too many things that the group could no longer provide. Seeing how I ended it tells me I have a ways to go in communication and decision making. It felt wrong the way I did it, and there is a chance to make that exit better.

As much as sometimes it seems life is static, when I do these posts I am yet again reminded of how blessed I am with the people in my life. That no matter life goes on, and its important to mark occasions even as simple as whiskey tastings, or going to brunch or watching a funny indian movie with the wife and friends, It’s what makes life worth living.

Happy Monday!

Brownness

13.1, 50, 185, and 345

This past weekend, I learned one of my biggest lessons in frustration and idiocy. As I have mentioned before I’d been training for the Long Beach Marathon for the past 3 months. The last week of training, my unofficial racing coach advised to take it easy and not do crazy “crossfit” like box jumps or deadlifts and of course, but were programmed and I did them both. Luckily, the box jumps were on a monday, but the deadlifts were too good to pass as it mean I could set a new PR. All rationality left my mind, and my ego hijacked my body as I strained and got myself a new personal record of 345 pounds times 3. The first two lifts were fine, but on the third, I felt a unusual twinge and immediately I felt pain. But my pride and ego continued to damage me because instead of bowing out of the workout AFTER the lift, I did the recommended weight of 185 for 35 reps, ensuring that whatever chance I had of not causing more pain evaporated.

Thanks to my chiro and wife, I managed to rest and ice, but on the day of 13.1 mile race, I grew nervous as my back felt sore. The first mile I was tentative at 13 minute page, and as I warmed up I went to a 12 minute 30 second pace, and it felt like all was well until my back seized up around mile 8 and I knew I was in trouble. Thankfully, I managed to finish the run, but I couldn’t help shaking the feeling that I could have done so much better.

I forgot to really tap into gratitude for the fact that I managed to run so much in pain. I wanted to overlook my accomplishments, because to me, as I get closer to 50 I am driven to do better, to be the best version of myself. And that rush may cost me. So I get to slow it down, to not rush to 50, to not get caught up in the numbers but live the life I am meant to be and be damn proud of it!

Happy Monday!

Brownness

Dearest Papa

Five years. It’s been five years since I heard your laughter or seen your smile or the way you cut fruit to hand out or how you grew you gardened or we discussed yet again why I wasn’t practicing law, or watching you tease mom or make funny noises, anything and everything to make those around you laugh.

It never occurred to me how working with you at Ziba Music would stay with me for the rest of my life, you managed to teach me so much even though I resisted fiercely, convinced my way was better when all along I now manage to emulate you in so many ways. So much time wasted in being right when just being present was enough.

So many times we speak of you and it’s just with longing or laughter or remembering the way you made us all feel. You filled the home with so much of yourself, left so many things for us to remember you for and about, and even now its hard to believe its has been 5 years since we last spoke, hugged or I called you Padre.

Yet with time the sadness dulls, but the fondness grows. The time doesn’t heal. but it makes it clear of how much you touched all of us. The grief comes out in random ways, yet it does not suffocate like it used to. We continue sharing stories, and keeping you alive in our own ways, and at the end of the day, that’s all matters.

Love you Padre. Love you Papa. Miss you more more than words could ever say.

Brownness

Vibing with Diljit, Friends and Family

And the streak continues, but first a look back to a long time. It’s been a while since I got excited about a new bhangra album. It reminded me of the days when it felt like I broke new music for my customers at Ziba Music, influenced up and coming DJS, just spread the word as best I could as a event promoter and all around music label wannabe. And then comes Moon Child Era by Diljit Dosanjh, not even a a year after his previous hit album G.O.A.T, and right off the bat I fell in love with Luna, Vibe, Void and Lover. It hit me how much good music moves me, changes the rhythm inside me, makes me feel alive and shout out to the world so LISTEN. TO. THIS.NOW.

It feels the holes of me wondering of when I got left behind in desi music, when I became the crudgmeon who says Sidhu Moose Wala is not real Bhangra music and then take that back as his music becomes something I listen to, and I get that I am no longer than young punk who thought who knew it all about desi music and MY genre of South Asian music. And so shift back and forth like the turntables of a DJ (do they even have that anymore), changing, remixing, mashing up and finally accepting that there are songs out there not my taste but the trend of the people, but I still get some of them once in a while like Diljit.

So making that the soundtrack for the week, I managed yet one to celebrate an old mentee, remince with older friends about the desi scene we knew, then went and spent time networking with my BNI Group and finally got some quality time with someone I have knowns for 25 plus years, ending the weekend celebrating a dear friend from Crossfit and ending is huge high note of being with niece Zara while she awaited the arrival of her baby brother who came today.

And so I end this post with shukar, shukar, shukar and I can’t wait to find out what this week holds for me!

Brownness

Another Splashy Weekend

Recently, I have begun to love doing my blogs the day after the weekend as it gives me a chance to ruminate on the week and yet again be amazed for our blessings even among sadness. Its been five years since Papa left and no amount of smiles and laughter can cover that fact up, but it can muffle it, make it seem that there is life after the departure of a loved one, time to celebrate other milestones, to grab dinner with old friends, some so much younger than me when I met them and now grown men with children.

It gives me so much wonder to see so many things occur in just one week, but more than anything else, it is realizing that moments and events keep occuring, and if we do not take the time to acknowledge them, they pass unnoticed through the mists of time, lost to memories that might get sparked randomly.

Rather than that happening, I see it better to greet it, to memorialize it, to thank the people in my life over and over because too often it easy to just mourn the losses, to continually grieve, to only notice the bad in ones life, to just feel alone when really we are alone with our thoughts that we can share with someone, anyone, if we would just open up.

So heres to another week passing, to celebrating, to grieving, to laughing, to worrying, to being with loved ones and sometimes alone but not lonely. I can’t wait to see what the new week will bring!

Brownness

Happy Birthday Preeti!

Today is my wife’s birthday and there is so much I have to say about someone who inspires me so much. It is a pleasure to wake up and see her beautiful face, to watch her embrace her niece or give me a tight hug or her hear reminisce about Papa or watch her hang out with my mom and sisters, sharing so much of herself with ease, jumping in daughter mode when needed, helping out her mom, hugging her dad, spending time with her sister in laws, and friends, and just doing it all not out of obligation but who she is.

It is inspiring to be around someone who has suffered so much in her young life yet people who meet her have no idea. I cannot complain when she gives up her time and energy in a heartbeat for not just her family but mine and has made it so I cannot say hers and my family. Through her love and personality, she has fused so many people into my life and made it bigger, grander, fuller and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

She has pushed me to grow, to be a better version of myself, allowed me space to deal with my demons and continually surprises me with her attitude and love. She gets better and younger looking each year and I envy the fact that she still gets carded. But more than anything else I am truly grateful that we get to be together through the tough times and the better ones, that we get to support each other when something heavy happens or when we are celebrating together. Occasions have more meaning for me when she is around, a constant reminder that one is not defined by disease or birth or family, but by their attitude, capacity to love, to forgive and to keep paying it forward.

Happy Birthday Babu!!