The Hitchhikers guide to a sane life

The Hitchhikers series is back again! In the past we have dwelled into topics like How to lose a guy and Basic Etiquette. Now we shall dwell into something more profound. I am not implying that we all lead an insane life. Mind it!!! But there are times when we might drag another fellow human to the point where he screams at us and ask us to shove all our stupid ideas up our own ass. This means that the other person considers you insane. The purpose of this guide is to make you look incredulously sane to a fellow human and to give you some peace of mind. While you read on, you might have a dizzy feeling that all this has been copied from a book by Robin Sharma.

Note that the guide could only give you suggestions. The actions are in your own hands. Here we go:


Mind your own business, for Christ sake!

Its hard to do. Isn’t it? We all have a craving for knowing about why Mrs. Kukreja’s daughter eloped? Or why Mr. Chaddha’s son comes so late at night? We gossip while removing clothes from the spilling cloth-line in our balconies or while playing pool in the club. We pass on the germ to our children who in turn gossip about their schoolmates. Our news readers gossip on national news about what other countries “might” be doing. Our politicians gossip about which candidates are being bought by the opposition. The first step towards a sane life is by MINDING YOUR OWN BUSINESS. Make sure your own life is on track before you blabber about someones else. Chinese whispers is a very dangerous game. 


Help others. They won’t bite you

Helping someone is a very beautiful feeling, even if its a very small gesture. Even if its something like helping someone cross the road, you will feel the tinge of satisfaction after you have finished the deed. A few months back, I was going to a mall in my friend’s car and when the beggars came to his car asking for money, he had a large number of packets of Parle ji biscuits which he distributed amongst them. “At least I know that the biscuits will not be taken away from them by the head of their gang”, he said. And, if you have a phobia about helping strangers, help your mom in the kitchen, or your dad with his car or your sis with her shopping.


Smile a lot, your muscles need some exercise

A smile is something which we use like money. We are too scared to take it out and we store it as if we are going to take it all to our graves. We have our own reasons for not smiling at strangers. We think that the whole world is cruel and shrewd, except us. I will come back to this point later, but yes, try to be happy about the fact that you have love in your life, your family is around you. I think that is reason enough to smile at times while staring out of the window of a bus.


Smell the roses, for the time will take away those petals

Recently, a friend of mine was telling me a story about an old uncle and aunt of her. The Uncle, apparently, slogged hard all his life and is at a very comfortable position right now. The children are all married and the couple spend a lot of time roaming around the world and by visiting a lot of places which they have always dreamt to see. The Uncle, once told my friend – “While my children were growing up, I forgot to enjoy my life. Now, I can afford to do it but what is the point when I can go to Disney Land, but can’t sit in most of the rides? What is the point when I can go and see a mountain but can’t climb it? I wish I had done it all earlier.” 

Don’t turn yourself into that uncle.


Follow the rules, all of them are not meant to be broken

When you see a line of cars in front of yours on the road, don’t jump the lane and make another line of cars. You know that there is a problem ahead and that is why the cars have stopped, don’t you? Now will making another line solve the problem? No! So, basically, if you do that, you prove this beyond doubt that YOU ARE INSANE!! The way we break rules in India, in any other country, such a person would end up in a mental asylum. Your brain is developed enough to reason and find logic in things(unless you were used in some scientific research and your brain was swapped with a penguin). USE THE LOGIC!


Be good. Not everyone you meet is shrewd.

Most of us have this irritating mentality of  thinking that every person we meet is a shrewd, manipulative and cruel bastard. The worst part is that even when we are very good with people on their faces, we still think that way about them. Its the first step towards being a hypocrite, a chauvinist. How can you expect others to be good to you when you approach them with this mindset? And remember, its a two way road!


Don’t lose your family and friends, they are your roots to reality

There is only a selected few set of people who will always treat you the same way no matter how big a big shot you become. Never lose them. They are your umbilical cord with reality, with your roots, with the place from where you started. No matter how big a fight you had with your friend, he would always hug you when you say sorry. And I had always believed that, this is one set of people with whom you can work out even the worst of situations and fights.


Be honest…atleast to yourself

Don’t collect money like stamps. Its not rare. You can always have it if you are good. Don’t treat family like lizards. Don’t make them feel that their presence is not important. Greed is like an untamed horse. If you don’t have a rope, don’t go near it. Be honest, and do things for a reason. There has to be a method in the madness. If you are hurting someone, then you better have a very very honest reason for it. Not to explain it to the person you are hurting, but to explain it to yourself.


Sorry, Please, I love you, Thank you – The SPIT Rule

I was amused by a certain practice during my initial days in Manchester. Here, when you get down from a bus, you say Thank you to the driver. Now if I imagine such a practice back in India, the driver would choke on tears of happiness and would ram the bus in a tree. Anyways, always follow the SPIT principle. Please, add a please at the end of you sentence. Thank you. They are important words and make a whole lot of difference. It makes the other person feel that you are not a snob, an egotist, an incarnation of Hitler OR insane! 


Learn to forgive and forget and screw the one who is not worth forgiving

Sometimes, it is important to break ties from the past to move forward and to be happy. It’s the hardest thing you might have to do but believe me, its important to maintain the mental balance. Forget a person with a smile and that person won’t haunt you. Try remembering the good times. And if the person is not worth forgiving, then screw the bastard. Some people are so conniving, that its a sin to let them go just like that. Give them a good piece of your mind and kick them out!


Party hard, don’t be a martyr and love thyself

When it is time to paint the town red, then just go ahead and do it. Remember, you have just one life. God, knows on which planet you would end up in your next birth. Maybe you would be a 15 legged monster who would be dripping liquids out of everywhere. So, enjoy your life and sometimes think about yourself before thinking about others. Love yourself. That is the only way you can hope that others will love you.

So, that is all folks. The precious points to lead a sane and happy life and to maintain your balance. If you STILL have any questions, then shoot!

Be sane, be good!

75 comments on “The Hitchhikers guide to a sane life

  1. “Now if I imagine such a practice back in India, the driver would choke on tears of happiness and would ram the bus in a tree” ROFL 😆

    Once I addressed a constable as “officer” and the change of emotions on his face is indescribable!!! “disbelief, shock, happiness, curiosity, doubt on my intelligence… and much more…” all passed through on his face in a couple of seconds. And he couldn’t answer me coherently about the direction that i had asked 🙂 😀

    • That one sentence has become quite famous! 🙂
      Once when I was in Kurukshetra, we went to a restaurant for dinner and I said thankyou to the waiter when he came to place the plates on the table. That guy was on the verge of crying. 🙂

  2. SPIT rule – this reminds me of discussion on other blogs where a Reader’s Digest survey (no comments on authenticity of sampling though) on politeness said Mumbai was worst in the world. People disagreed with RD. Most said SPIT rule doesnt apply here in India. 😦

    • Even I remember leaving a comment there. I don’t think you can compare two different cities in two different countries on any parameter. What might be considered polite at one place might be considered over dramatic at the other. But, yes, generally we do tend to be rude with strangers and I think it is simply because we don’t trust each other. When someone tries to be nice with us, we look at him suspiciously.

  3. this one is the best of all 😛
    but i wouldnt agree with you on this part amit, it has just been 1 month since i have been out of the school and have come across several bastards
    imagine, i am sitting for my first board exam and somebody from other school asks me if i can help him out in exam
    i politely told him ” sorry, i am not interested ”
    and in the next exam his bloody moron friends went on laughing and passing insane comments (f***** bastards) , just because i refused to resort to unfair means and what more i didnt say a word ( reason it was the most important exam for me and i wanted to concentrate on it than on those good for nothing a** h**** .) otherwise if it would have been something else i would have sure shot blasted them off
    i really dont understand , is there something wrong with me or others because i always end up into fights with others ( maybe i dare to speak my mind and dont want to flock with the crowd which in my case is always wrong )
    rest i agree with you on all terms specially being honest to myself ……i think if i view my actions from this point of view i have thoroughly justified . what do you say ??

    • there is nothing wrong with you dear.. it is the world which laughs at people with integrity these days.
      you speak your mind. and follow your heart. you did the right thing.

    • There is nothing wrong in what you did. Who would have been responsible if you would have been caught. Will that guy come to bail you out?
      If you would have asked me this question a few years back, I would have said – Punch him hard on the face. But over the years I have realized that its best to ignore such people. They don’t matter and you would never meet them again in your life.
      Life has its own ways of teaching lessons.

  4. Loved the post, Amit. I have heard all this before from different sources but the way you have compiled it, it has refreshed my memory. I will try try and remember these thoughts.

  5. Party – ‘Maybe you would be a 15 legged monster who would be dripping liquids out of everywhere.’

    very right.. there is only one life to live so Love thyself.

    very nice totally..

  6. Loved the whole list! It reminded me of a lot of things 🙂

    ”the driver would choke on tears of happiness and would ram the bus in a tree.”ROFL!

    And Thanks for refreshing my menory 🙂

    @Sakhi that was funny! ”Once I addressed a constable as “officer” and the change of emotions on his face is indescribable!!! “disbelief, shock, happiness, curiosity, doubt on my intelligence… and much more…” all passed through on his face in a couple of seconds. And he couldn’t answer me coherently about the direction that i had asked ” LOL!

    @Poonam I think these four words that is SPIT are meant to be applied in our everyday vocabulary eg Shukriya dhanyawad and maaf kijiyega

    But the reason people do not agree with the RD survey is
    1. It has no room for taking into account the cultural differences
    2. It takes into account things like whether a man would open the door for a lady.
    (I personally see no problems with this)
    However, In India men are more accustomed to walking infont of the women in anticipation of imaginary dangers(Also they are jerks in a lot of instances)and also could be their patriarchal mindsets which refuse to evolve

    3. If you take a careful look at the RD survey and the criteria used to measure rudeness or courtesy anyway you look at it, you will notice why so many of us do not agree with it.
    Had the survey been one which had taken into account cultural differences and also had some logical parameters most of us would have accepted it.A survey for the sake of survey makes no sense and that too without any criteria. And if you notice most Asian countries rank the lowest in the survey.

    • Thanks Indyeah. That is what I exactly think about the RD survey. Two gestures might mean something entirely different in two different cultures.
      Also, all these surveys are done on a very small scale. Questioning a few thousand of people and judging a city of crores on the basis of that sounds funny to me. What is the probability that the results are right? It won’t be even 1%.

  7. @Mind your own business: ya, its really hard from Indian, we just love to know that, don’t we, and some people have this a a full-time job.
    @Be good : I try and do this, but people feel I am helping because I want some thing out the transitions. Thank pisses me off. and puts me off.

    • The fact that people think you want something in return when you help them shows the amount of distrust we have for each other. We think that everyone we meet must have a vicious reason for being nice. This has to be changed somehow.

  8. hilarious listing!!

    “Now if I imagine such a practice back in India, the driver would choke on tears of happiness and would ram the bus in a tree” ROFL.

    I’ve become so used to saying (and sometimes being at th receiving end of) “Thank You!” to autorickshaw drivers that I took the habit home to Trivandrum. The first driver I said ‘thank you’ to dropped my money and blinked at me for 10 seconds!! Then he smiles sheepishly, said “hmmm” and drove off quickly! 😀

    • Thanks! It was not supposed to be hilarious! 😛
      I too have quite a few thank you stories and I have to somehow control myself when I go back to India. 🙂

  9. I love your Hitchhikers series!!

    /*While you read on, you might have a dizzy feeling that all this has been copied from a book by Robin Sharma.*/

    Hahahaa!! So you’ve read The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari? Bless You!

  10. “when you get down from a bus, you say Thank you to the driver” lol, if this is tried in India your leg would be inside the bus and baaki parts would be thrown out…who has the time to stop and listen to an honest thank you 😀

    Loved the post for it’s simplistic but so very true tips 🙂

    • And have you noticed that the way our buses are structured, you don’t pass the driver when you get down. Most of the times, the door is quite far behind where the driver sits. But, yes, you can always scream! 🙂
      Thanks! I am glad! 🙂

  11. I have tried some of these, usually am profuse with my sorry’s n thank u’s n pleases.

    As for thanking the bus driver – once, when I was a young girl, a driver winked at me as I was getting off. I was more surprised than miffed n nearly fell off.

    As for loving your own self first, I do try to follow that. Doing what I please.

  12. 1. True. People in my office are more bothered about what I spent for the tattoo rather than the design! Hmmphhh !!!

    2. But there should be technique to find out who really needs help !! Lately, I have been helping people a lot and ending up in trouble.

    3. You get plenty of that from me. Non stop, that is !

    4. Very true. Why do you think I got a tattoo? (not again, huh?)

    5. Something that I need to make note of. Not in terms of the traffic, but the general rules of life !

    6. Baah ! seriously, Im now in a position where I cant even trust my shadow! I would need time, probably!

    7. Never will. Im no one without those set of people.

    8. Hmmm….i guess I am 😉

    9 and 10 related. I can never forgive the person who back stabs me !

    11. Are you kidding me? I dont have anyone else to love other than me!!! 😀

    Nice post, enjoyed the whole write up!

    • You are completely in awe of your tattoo!! 😛
      Well, I think another post is required to make people understand whom to help and whom not to. 🙂
      And see, you can’t generalize and put everyone in the same category. Some people might have betrayed you. Be cool! 🙂

  13. Well said, Amit. Though I differ with you when you say this:

    //Most of us have this irritating mentality of thinking that every person we meet is a shrewd, manipulative and cruel bastard.//

    Why would you say that? And why would anyone think like that the first time they meet anyone?


    • Well, I have seen many people around me having this mentality. Maybe its because of the job I am in.
      And if you meet a stranger and he is very very helpful, won’t this thought pass your mind once. Maybe not in the over the top degree to which I have mentioned it, but it will be there at the back of your mind.

  14. “And if the person is not worth forgiving, then screw the bastard. Some people are so conniving, that its a sin to let them go just like that. Give them a good piece of your mind and kick them out!”

    Bhaiya ye wala to mujhe malum hai kahan se aaya hai.. but Still I think it was not apt behaviour at that time 🙂

  15. “Mind your own business”.

    Is that possible? I mean if it was then world would be such a drab place to live. 😀

    “Be good. Not everyone you meet is shrewd.”

    Do people think that way? I don’t think so.

    Last one totally on it. Par-TAY.

    • Well, I am not completely against gossiping but it should not harm anyone. When people gossip and laugh on their victims face, that is what I completely abhor.
      I have met many people who have this mentality. I don’t know why, but I have seen my own very good friends judging people very rudely at times. I find that a little strange though.

  16. Brilliant list man….. 🙂 what has happened to you in England????? The solitude has one thinking and contemplating on the deepest secrets of the world….. 🙂 LOL

    party???…..Where is it? I will come………….. 🙂

    This is seriously a great article…..

    • Thanks! Oh!!! Its not the solitude. I am surrounded by quite a lot of people here! 🙂 Its just the mood!
      Party, hopefully is in Scotland in the Easter holidays. Keeping my fingers crossed! 🙂

  17. Driver would ram into a tree ? Lol. I say he would just give youa confused look.
    I remember once when I said thankyou to a shopkeeper back home, he gave me a confused smile.

  18. @ oorja and amit : thank you both of you for supporting me .
    i think amit i also felt like punching him back on his face, though some of my friends said so but i told them that i have come to give my exam and not enter into fight of fists .
    but i guess you are right , it is always better to ignore such people
    and you know i believe that if i have worked hard for something then why should i allow others to take advantage of my efforts . and rest i think life teaches a lesson to everybody , not today may be tomorrow that guy will learn his lesson

  19. Bhaiya This one’s for you :

    Why some time one has to apologize and to move on with life this must give
    us some idea as to why there is pride in apologizing.
    One day I hopped in a taxi and we took off for the airport. We were driving
    in the left lane when suddenly a black car jumped out of a parking space
    right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his brakes, skidded, and
    missed the other car by just inches! The driver of the other car whipped his
    head around and started yelling at us. My taxi driver just smiled and waved
    at the guy. And I mean, he was really friendly.
    So I asked, ‘Why did you just do that? This guy almost ruined your car and
    sent us to the hospital!’ This is when my taxi driver taught me what I now
    call, ‘The Law of the Garbage Truck.’
    He explained that many people are like garbage trucks. They run around full
    of garbage, full of frustration, full of anger, and full of disappointment.
    As their garbage piles up, they need a place to dump it and sometimes
    they’ll dump it on you. Don’t take it personally. Just smile, wave, wish
    them well, and move on. Don’t take their garbage and spread it to other
    people at work, at home, or on the streets.
    The bottom line is that successful people do not let garbage trucks take
    over their day. Life’s too short to wake up in the morning with regrets,
    so….. ‘Love the people who treat you right. Pray for the ones who don’t.’
    Life is ten percent what you make it and ninety percent how you take it!

    • No matter how much you try, I am not going to agree with that. I still think that what I did was right. Someone had to teach him a lesson. And you can’t draw parallels between this story and what happened to us. We “lived” with the garbage truck for two years!!! Don’t forget that!

  20. For a second, I read it as ‘Screw the one who is not worth screwing’ and I was like.. Baawla ho gaya hai ye ladka videsh jaake’. The I read again…’forgiving’ it was. Lol.. Totally agree, and the last gyaan.. haaye.. mera toh funda hi wahi hai bachpan se.

    Btw, Saw Chandler on RHS and smiled as I too gave that quiz on facebook and I too am Chandler.

  21. @AmreekanDesi, @Xylene : Thanks!!

    @Arpit : Yes, just let him be. Such people learn when its too late. IGNORE is the word. 🙂

    @Nita : Thanks! 🙂

    @Vee : Wah!!! Nahi nahi I am quite fine till now, but the temptations have increased mainfold. 😉 Lets see, till when I am able to maintain my sanctity! 😀
    Arre, this one is not from Facebook. In facebook one, I am Phoebe! 😦

    @Shivya : Yes, it does! Thanks! 🙂

  22. Hmm.. ya I guess it is difficult to draw parallel’s.
    b/w Lovely post .. you are a becoming a PRO now..
    but the SPIT Rule – do not try it in New York or Chicago or any big american cities as it does backfire there , I had a experience in chicago… but holds good for small towns in US and may be most of Europe…

  23. One of the best post I have read.. and I will read it again and again when I find sometime..

    /*Don’t lose your family and friends, they are your roots to reality*/

    that’s true.. I search of stars we will lose the moons 😦

    /*Follow the rules, all of them are not meant to be broken*/

    hmmm.. at times rules are insane.. so we can break some laws..

    /*Mind your own business, for Christ sake!*/

    really a tough thing to do for anyone, right??

  24. A great mind boggling list. I hope people have more time to retrospect and change their attitude towards others. As time passes people are becoming more and more confined to their gathered way of thinking and becoming selfish.

    Keep blogging mate!!

  25. @Moukound : Thanks! I wish that was so easy for me too!! 🙂

    @Kanagu : Thanks! Of Course there are some crazy rules but we are not sheep. We can differentiate! 🙂

    @Biju : Thanks!

    @Deepsm25 : Yeah! I wish for the same!

  26. Pingback: More Things About Me and Best Post « My Random Thoughts

  27. Nice one 🙂

    Let us hope that somany people will see this post and try to implement in thier lives which benefit mainly for themselves.

    SPIT is followed mostly in westren world may be because of their self respect nature and individauality which lacks in India because of various reasons.

  28. Pingback: Feel Good Guru » Eco Sexy Valentines

  29. Pingback: Como lograr cualquier cosa que quieras en la vida | Raisa

  30. Pingback: The Utopian Indian Society | Bhavia's Blog

  31. Pingback: Its time I answer some questions | Mashed Musings

So, you were saying?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s