15/365: Don’t change what isn’t broken

Posted: January 15, 2011 in Cycling, Family, Heart, People, Politics
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Seriously, Scott, what kinda time machine lets me spend only an hour in a different time zone? I know we all have resource constraints, but do we really have to put constraints on our imagination too? What a tacky, unimaginative topic. Chheh!

Those were my first thoughts when I read the topic for today – If you had a time machine that only let you spend one hour in a different time, what date would you go to?

Later, I remembered that this was not the first time I had encountered this topic. There was one previous time too. I think it was sometime in 1989-1990. I remember this because I was still in my first school, Rajiv Gandhi was still alive and even the Mandal commission riots were yet to take place. As part of a class exercise, the teacher was asking all of us to name the hour we’d like to visit and what ‘new’ would they do this time. In other words, what will we change? While everyone said something personal, my answer was anything but. My answer: To go back and warn Indira Gandhi about the awaiting assassins and save her life :). Yes, all that regular reading of the newspapers and India Today in my early years had gotten into my head. I remember the teacher praising me and, thus, every student after me wanted to either save Indira Gandhi or Chacha Nehru or Mahatma Gandhi. Some of us even wanted to go back and warn the Indian kings about British coming to ‘divide and rule’ us ;)

That was then.

Now, I’m not even sure if I want to change anything in the past. For one, I like the life I’ve lived so far. Yes, there have been a lot of times when the things weren’t good for me, were even downright ugly. But without those troughs, I wouldn’t be here appreciating all the other goods of my life. And I would not be the person I was. I like the person I am, mostly. So, there’s not much in the past I would want to change.

For another, having read about and, mostly, understood the butterfly effect, I’m not sure if a bad deed in the past changed into good would make the world today a better place. The outcome is just as likely to be something worse. So, why change?

However, just for the sake of it, I’m picking a few moments in the past where I might go back for an hour and change something:

  • Yes, saving the Iron Lady of India from her death is still an option. But there are so many more, most of them personal.
  • From a recent career PoV, say, I might go back and put in a better attempt at that consulting interview (#11 here). It really was a dream job for a long while before it became just another consulting job and I thus lost interest.
  • To undo something that aches my heart to this day, I would like to spend another hour holding hands and talking to Mataji (a great grand mother) & Bauji (Ma’s dad). I wrote about them both (here, in the last paragraph), but I really haven’t written enough.
  • Another family related incident I may want to correct (and this will take 30 seconds) is on that phone call with dad. I was in b-school and dad asked me if he could give my beloved road bike – the same bike that had carried me to Shimla – to a cousin, 10 years younger. Out of my deep emotional connect with that bike, I said no. I should have said yes. Given another chance, I will say yes.
  • Just to show how dedicated a Ferrari fan I am: I would go back to the Abu Dhabi last year and somehow convince Ferrari not to issue that order for Alonso to follow Mark Webber into the pits. The order that eventually ended up giving Vettel the 2010 champion’s title. Yup, I’m still piqued about it.
  • On a romantic note, I might like to go back and spend an hour romancing S, a bit more aggressively, the day she gave me that naughty smile. Maybe we could’ve crossed an emotional threshold that day and thus I wouldn’t have lost her to that dude from WIMWI she met on exchange.
  • From a totally personal, perverse, perspective, I’d like to go back to that Valentines day. The day D surprised me by landing up at my place a lot earlier than planned. With gifts. And wished me morning with a long kiss. Things got hot that day, but not hot enough. I dunno what was I thinking when I reminded her that we were late for a stupid Surajkund Mela when instead I could’ve been turning up the heat, if you know what I mean. What a wonderful day it would have been…

Let’s end on that dirty note. I’ve never ended on a dirty note before, so let this be a first. ;)


P.S.: Shouldn’t the title be ‘Don’t change anything’ given the Butterfly Effect that I mentioned earlier.

  1. Ms.N says:

    Nope- just that i find it an interesting concept… i didnt realise it was from a book or may be several books? i thought it was one of those things people just spoke about in a whole philosophical way.

  2. Ms.N says:

    where did u read abt the butterfly effect?

  3. Jill says:

    i like the way you think ;) yes i do blog. i initially signed up for the postaweek challenge but decided against it because i’m not very good at putting thoughts into words. apparently you could do it (very well)

    my blog is http://ripplesoftruth.wordpress.com/

    • r says:

      I like your blog. Wondering why you gave up on the post-a-week challenge. I suggest you pick it up again, you seem a natural at it. Of course, need not stick to the topics provided by the dailypost team. Write your own.


      P.S.: Noticed late, we both have the same blog theme :)

  4. Jill says:

    i like your title :) you’ve been posting more this month than you did for the last couple of months

    keeep me posted! :)

    • raven says:

      Thanks Jill. Yes, I’ve been posting more as I’m doing this post-a-day challenge. Along with my occasional random posts, this does make for a big flow of posts on my blog.

      Do you write? Do share your blog.


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