Rohit's Realm - January 2011

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January 02, 2011

The Death of the Public Journal

It has been half a decade since I last posted New Year's resolutions, and by and large, my track record with accomplishing the resolutions I have mentally set for myself since then has been just as dismal as my performance in writing for this most forlorn of sites in the past few years. As I was thinking of what I wanted to accomplish this year, however, I could not help but recognize how useful the practice of writing down resolutions was, and for two independent reasons. The first (and most obvious) is that writing down the resolutions provides a means of referring back, and measuring success (or, in my case, failure) on a year-to-date and year-on-year basis. The second, however, is what I find to be more interesting: being able to look back years after the fact and see what I was thinking at a very different time in my life. The latter gets to a point I made some years ago: I only wish that I could have had the foresight to have begun writing earlier . . . ; it is an immensely powerful feeling to read what you have written so many years before, feeding not only wistful nostalgia, but an undeniable sense of accomplishment and maturity.

Having established that writing down things is necessarily a good thing doesn't, however, say much about the medium in which it is written. And in many ways, the conundrum I face today is that I am looking to find personal significance through blog posts I had composed at other times in my life, knowing full well the manner in which those posts were composed. Put otherwise, what I am looking for is a journal, and what I have is a blog. There is a distinction between the two, and for this particular enterprise, it makes all the difference in the world.

January 30, 2011

Say Hello to My Little Friend

PowerShot S95

As I have written on extensively in the past six months, one of my goals since emerging out of the graduate school bubble in which I was ensconced the past three years has been to rekindle many of my pre–law school hobbies. In that vein, I have resumed reading, gotten back into coding, and even started running regularly again—sort of. One of my hobbies that never quite died was photography: even in the darkest days of my law school life (and rest assured, there were many such days), I still brought along my trusty DSLR whenever I traveled, from New York to Mississippi to the United Kingdom to Japan to Montréal.

But even as my travel photography maintained a steady clip, my personal photography fell dramatically. Indeed, this past December, I had to struggle quite a bit to find pictures of myself for my annual holiday card—I simply hadn't taken any casual pictures at all in the past year. Once the guy who was never without a camera at any event and always the one shooting long-armed self-portraits (as those who knew me back in the day know well), my casual photography saw a precipitous decline during law school. Which, like many other law school–induced fall outs is really too bad: memories aren't just a function of travel, and without doubt, there were occasions in the past two years that could have and should have been captured. What happened?