Thursday, 2 July 2009

Grid Locked

It should have been a cake walk. Sticking those "magic stars" up on the ceiling, that go all radiant in the dark. The michelangeloisation of our room's ceiling was for my year-and-half old daughter, I must add. So I had to basically stick 500 small ones, 300 semi-small ones, and a few more hundred of the big, semi-big ones. All scattered randomly across the sky/ceiling.

Ah. Now we get to the tough part. I was academically trained to be an engineer - a mechanical one at that. So seven years of isometric diagrams, vernier tortures, and more such perpendicular/parallel lines preset with T-squares and Drafters - all kicked in together. And thus fell apart the whole random part of the exercise.

Every next star I stuck was at an inglorious equidistance from the last two ones - involuntarily at congruent angles and in concurrent planes. Irrespective of how hard I tried to be chaotic with the layout - which would have nicely made it naturally "sky" like and all, the bloody thing ended up looking like a fluroscent graph paper with pentagrammed vertices. The one large moon plus one satellite plus one rocket - all provided relief from the infinite symmetry - with a nice little pattern of their own.

Things didn't help that apart from the academic brainwashing, I also have had the privilege of seating next to a few grid-obsessed art directors in my work life. Is it that I've been surrounded by so much methodical symmetry that there's no scope for madness? Scary thought.

But of course, the Golden ratio now made sense. Like Fibonacci, I'm sure God too is an engineer (with a keen eye for art direction). He just made an exception for the sky, that's all. Or did he? I need a telescope. And a vernier calliper.

Post Script: I spent 3 hours on precariously balanced tables to finish my symmetrical masterpiece. And now my daughter is scared of the shiny things in her room. She refuses to let us switch off the lights. I think He's a sardonic engineer.


agent green glass said...

lol. that was tooo funny. and yup, bound to happen with kids. took my little cousin to the zoo, to show him his first tiger and elephant...and he was more interested in chasing the one stary dog that hung around there.

but the post...made me laugh out loud. all the best da. you're going to need it.

agent green glass said...

oooh...stray not stary. all the references to stars and strays got mixed up.

slash said...

Funny. The exact same zoo incident happened with me too. At the Mysore Zoo. My daughter got more excited seeing the stray dogs and (stray) monkeys than anything in the cage.
"da"? In your cross-country educational sojourns, have you spent time in or around Bangalore ever?

agent green glass said...

aah. you caught the da. automatically happens when i speak to friends from bangalore. nope, never lived there - though my folks were at yelahanka, if that's how its spelt. and so been there couple of times. but...i have super friends in bangalore. and chances are u probably know them. coz they make ad films! : )

slash\\ said...

Yelahanka 10/10 for spelling. Your folks were in Air Force?
Me too caught up with the "da"-ing in Bangalore, though being just under 5 years old in the city. Yeah, it's catchy that way :)

mnraj said...

this is something which is very common in children nowadays i think. even i faced the same.

Jandy said...

he heee...
like neel got me to paint wild animals on his wall (altho out of jungle book) - and - the story ends like yours does.