Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Back to the Back

My nemesis, my back finally caught up with me this past week and had me laid up in bed, alone and in pain for most of that time. And as a result, I have been out of circulation and immobilized.
As a kid, I often hoped that I would not have all these painful conditions like a tooth extraction, loss, or a backache but now I have lived through it and more, I realise that it actually is as bad as it is said to be, but nearly not as bad as it could be.
While in pain, I realised certain facts about doctors and patients. I dont know if others have gone through it or not. As a doctor, one thinks like a doctor, its so very natural and instinctual even. But when I became a patient, I was confused and very uncomfortable. And that is after the fact that I am a doctor myself and would be expected to know better. And the one thing that I wanted most from my doctor was time, patience and an explanation. And those are the things that were in the least supply. An inability to listen, to interrupt before I could complete, and the tendency to let explanations hang in the air are probably the most disturbing things for any patient. And I admit that when I sit on the other side of the table, I am often guilty of that too for whatever reasons.
I hope I can improve my practice through my own experience.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Cassia fistula

Cassia fistula
Originally uploaded by Shubh M Singh.
Happy Baisakhi to all. May the New Year be great and prosperous.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

The Chronicles of a Rolling Stone

I was born in the family of humans. Yet, I became a rolling stone. Not because of a change in chemical constitution, but due to a lack of fine moral fiber. As a result, with an increase in girth and a gradual rounding up of edges, I have gradually started to look like a boulder (thats a stone too!!) that might roll when given a hard enough push. And as we all know, a rolling stone gathers no moss. But now that I have become a rolling stone (for reasons too numerous to mention), its a fine idea to talk about the good rolling stones and the bad rolling stones.
The one man who I want to kill most dearly is a certain Publilius Syrus who had nothing better to do than to go around defaming rolling stones. I mean what sort of a man says that a rolling stone gathers no moss. And that too before Lord Jesus Christ was born. And anyways, who would like to have a growth of some slimy moss anyway. For the record Publilius Syrus was a Latin writer of maxims (actually a slave), who was smart enough to impress all people who looked at him only superficially (reminds me of me) and got out of slavery and put forth a lot of paleo-Oscar Wildean stuff including the one on rolling stones gathering no moss. But we rolling stones are made of sterner stuff and we kept on rolling and kept on repelling all sorts of mossy efforts to stick to us. Its a good thing that most of the stuff is now lost, who knows what else he might have said.Excluding of course a certain Kate Moss.
The next famous rolling stone was closer home, and true to form was an idiot of the first order too. he had nothing better to do than to roll away and allow what he guarded be plundered on hearing "Open sesame", or as we say " Khulja simsim". A certain Alibaba had a lot of fun this way and got luckier than Shilpa Shetty. He had nothing what so ever to do with mobile phones and sim cards, and it was probably a good thing that he developed loss of hearing as he grew old and that left some stuff intact. I even have a picture of what he did. And anyways, he gave an idea to Indian politicians of saying reservations whenever they run out of ideas.

Alibaba says "good thing I took that memory course when I did".

There are some other notable rolling stones too, these guys keep running around rolling in the death valley in far away Nevada, and some of these guys are as much as 50 kgs in weight and how they move is a closely guarded secret of the rolling stone free mason society.

(Pic from www.luminouslandscape.com)

There is one in south India too, only for some strange reason, its called the Krishna's butterball.

It actually is a large rolling stone, it decided to let some moss gather. Only problem being that Mahabalipuram is too warm for moss to gather and later it became too late to start rolling again. Moral of the story being, keep rolling.

Soon, after someone decided to take out a magazine and then a rock group too by the name of Rolling Stone thus lending some much-needed credibility.

It is eventually Bob Dylan who has made the Rolling Stone a force to be reckoned with. If Dylan sings about something, it gotta be profound, right???

How does it feel
How does it feel
To be on your own
With no direction home

Like a complete unknown
Like a rolling stone?

He probably started off writing a song about a rolling tyre but then decided that a rolling stone sounded so much better. I agree whole heartedly.

I dont know 'bout being alone
or with no direction home
or being a complete unknown

but its not all that bad
being a Rolling Stone!!!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Beauty in the Common place

Beauty in the Common place
Originally uploaded by Shubh M Singh.
It is spring time in Chandigarh and the whole city is a riot of color. There are trees of all hues in full bloom, namely the Kachnar and the Amaltas. Some tree with rust red leaves and expectedly, its prime time for photography. A couple of days ago, I went out with a good friend, M S Kaushal to rose garden, Chandigarh to get some good shots. And to my utter surprise, within a few minutes I noticed that the whole place was literally crawling with photographers of various hues. We often got into each others way but it was all in good fun. In addition to some of the shots I got, I saw this picture being taken and I could not resist taking one of the photographer and liked it enough to post it here.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

As if one wasnt enough......

Mirror, mirror on the wall.....

Cannabis, backlit

Cannabis, backlit
Originally uploaded by Shubh M Singh.
I dont know how many people in the campus have noticed but we are all surrounded by a deluge of cannabis, called various other things by various other people such as Bhang, Charas, ganja, Marijuana, reefers, weed, pot, grass etc etc.
By all accounts it is a benign drug and if someone is bold enough to try and doesnt know how to, as me and i will tell you what to do (dont take it myself!!)
But on a serious note, marijuana has been I think unfortunately and rather unfairly vilified in the press and other media. By all accounts it seems to be favourably placed when compared to alcohol and tobacco which are over the counter and freely available and by the looks of it, as prices come down and there are more and more booze vends everywhere, things can only get worse. Lancet 2007; 369: 1047–53 by Nutt et al. is a very interesting article and a must read for anyone interested in this stuff.
The jury is still out on the matter of the relationship of cannabis and psychosis. But there is no doubt that cannabis does precipitate and worsen psychosis in some predisposed individuals. Only yesterday I saw a patient in my OPD, chained and bound with a case of bad cannabis induced, perpetuated and worsenened psychosis. But other than that Cannabis seems to be Ok as psychoactive drugs go and may actually be beneficial in some cases.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

A Change In Plan

Saw this the other day in Punjab University and could not resist taking a picture and now putting it on here. Now what could have happened here??

Monday, April 02, 2007


Originally uploaded by Shubh M Singh.
I took this picture somedays ago, and already the time of the wonderful sky is gone. And now, all we will have for the next few months is bare, featureless and extremely boring skies. Exactly the type that do not encourage any photography. I wish there was some rain over the horizon, and some interesting people to shoot.
Locations of visitors to this page