Big may be synonymous of ‘not small’ but thinking big is not the same as thinking ‘nothing is too small’. In fact, I would even venture to say that they are antonyms. Thinking big essentially means setting your goals high, planning everything on lavish scales and displaying sheer class in everything you do. I remember such people being compared to the famous <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-comffice:smarttags" /><st1lace>Hollywood</st1lace> film maker Cecile B.Demille in my younger days. The problem with thinking big is that you have to follow it up with suitable action. Otherwise you would just end up as a day-dreamer! There is also another problem in thinking big. You may be branded as vain, egoistic or arrogant. But thinking that nothing is too small amounts to what is known as ‘making a mountain of a mole hill’. It is like attempting to fell a mouse with a veritable army equipped with the most modern weapons instead of catching it with a piece of masal vadai hooked to a trap. It is like <st1:country-region><st1lace>India</st1lace></st1:country-region> facing a one-day match with five runs required for a victory with five wickets in hand and four overs remaining but losing four wickets in 3.3 overs scoring only four runs. Quite a few old people die watching the match on the TV by the time <st1:country-region><st1lace>India</st1lace></st1:country-region> scores the winning run off the last ball of the match! There is a saying in Tamil questioning the wisdom of those who set fire to their houses to kill the bugs that have taken shelter there. Such statements cause great ire to the protagonists of “nothing is too small”. They may defend the action of the house-burners saying that if the bugs were allowed a free run, the inmates of the house would contract the deadly kala-azar and kick the bucket! I too belong to the ‘Nothing is too small’ club. I don’t like people who catch snakes by the scruff of their necks and thrash them on the floor as if they are a piece of an old rope. They miss all the excitement of life. On the contrary, I love people who sighting a piece of rope in darkness, stay rooted to their spot imagining it to be a highly poisonous snake and going through the whole gamut of emotions. They sweat profusely, breathe furiously and tremble like the vocal chord of an octogenarian. They look desperately for cover but can’t move an inch. When they finally see that it was just a piece of rope, they feel immensely relieved and thank the piece of rope for adding drama to a few moments of their life. The people who think that nothing is too small may appear to make a heavy weather of everything that they do but one can rest assured that the jobs entrusted to them will be done meticulously. In fact, they foresee more problems in getting their tasks completed than there can ever be. This makes them failure-proof. And these people have all the excitement of life than those who think big. Do you want to know how? But first tell me who you would want to be. Someone who thinks nothing of everything or someone who thinks everything of nothing? Just think of it. Life is already getting too monotonous and there is hardly any scope for any excitement except for an occasional Tehelka exposure or a stamp paper scam, or Lallu landing his helicopter on a highway, which again, as Wodehouse would put it, is no skin off our nose. We have no alternative but to look for maximum fun and excitement out of every small thing that happens around us. Years back, I saw a Tamil film that had a character who used to get shocked by every bit of information passed on to him. If you tell him that you had just had your lunch, a shiver would run through his body as he asked you, 'You had lunch?' as if you had consumed a cup of hemlock poison. Utterly ridiculous was what I thought of him then but after years of professional, domestic and social ennui, I have now come to feel that it was a capital method to fight boredom. So if I express shock about whatever happens around me, don’t get dismayed. It’s just my way of squeezing the last drop of excitement out of this dull life.