Since my cold from this weekend became worse this morning, I decided to take some time off and recover from it, instead of ploughing through it like I usually do. After all I am in my thirties now and my body is not the same as it used to be in terms of bouncing back from common maladies like a summer cold.
I ended up working the first half anyways. As many know my company just went through a major restructuring and since that disrupted some work yesterday afternoon, there were some loose ends that needed tidying up. But the rest of the afternoon was spent, first looking at Tara’s videos on my phone and then ruminating.
Several thoughts crossed my almost senile and sick mind and some left a mark. Or in other words I held some close and tight, in order for them to leave a mark.
Just so I can some day peep into my almost senile mind at a later point in life, here is a myriad of thoughts that danced in my head between 12-3pm.
How does Sundar Pichai celebrate? I go out to eat to celebrate any life event. I associate fine dining with celebrations. I don’t know why that has become a norm for me. But that’s how it is. What did Sundar do when he found out he was going to be the CEO of Google Inc. How did he tell his wife? How has their life changed? Will she continue to do what she was doing before he became the CEO? What about their kids?
Then I thought about how nice guys win in the end. I am fiercely competitive in my professional life. But I cannot be evil. I have been subjected to the evil side of competitive personalities. And I did not like them. And so as much as I strive hard to keep that competitive edge in me alive, I am always cautious of not being perceived as evil. Evil is not always the opposite of good. Evil is malicious. I felt good about all those times when I saw evil winning around me, but I decided to step aside, quit the race and in some cases, call out the evil, instead of joining the party.
It occurred to me then, that Tara will grow up in a strange world. She will grow up amongst brown leaders and visionaries who will run the core of this valley. And I was happy that she will not consider herself to be different because she is brown.
My mind then ran wild with some other random stuff happening at work. How I felt like I was exposed to the unconscious bias that happens at tech giants and how I think it was curbed quite well. And then I wondered if it was just a figment of my imagination. I am good at perceiving other’s emotions. I really am.. no seriously. I may decide not to act on my perceptions, but I feel like I have a good sense of the meta emotions that are at play in meetings and group discussions. I often use these readings to drive consensus in a positive way; and some times play on them to win. And that drove my mind back to Sundar. And here is what happened after that.