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Leela Maps Invented 2017

Hopping between SF Bay Area communal houses, I realized that practically all things could be visualized on a map.


17 yo going to SK World Taikai ‘05

My first taste of durian ‘04

In the musty, tiled apartment of the family of Hindu devotees that hosted us, they offered us durian.

The family and my father proclaimed:

”It has such a strong smell! Like gasoline!”

“Will you like it? It’s okay not to like it.”

I don’t remember having much of an opinion, except that it was an expansive creamy texture that was heavier then I expected. It felt pretty incompatible with the other foods that we had been eating: typically rice, curry and puris with our hands.

My father, Swami Vittalananda Saraswati, had brought us along on his trip to lead services for a family of Malaysian devotees of Shree Maa.

July ’20: 8 Days at a Psychiatric Hospital

I was taken to John George Psychiatric Hospital for being naked in public.

A car drives through an intersection in a suburban area, passing a crosswalk, tree, and sign that reads "Naked in Berkeley 2020".


The patient uniform was a blue-green uniform with a loose top and elastic-banded pants. They provided grippy socks, but I maintained being barefoot despite occasional exasperation of staff.

I was not allowed to be naked, even in my room. I was only safe to disrobe in bed.

My roommate had been to John George a few times. She was a passionate young woman with a good heart.

The patients at John George were varied. Some would chronically cuss and would be soothed by listening to music on wireless headphones. Most were pretty normal and were caught up in difficult situations.

I made many friends among the patients. They were perceptive, clever, and funny people. They would periodically be medicated into drooling, dazed stupors.

I kept active, engaging in improvisational exercise, socializing and writing about my experiences. Many of the nurses and other patients lauded my enthusiasm, but it was referred to as mania in the psychiatric reports.


The nurses were as varied as the patients. Some genuinely believed in the institutional model, most saw it as just a job to pay the bills (and found themselves befriending patients), and some were trying to be a force of good in a sick system.

I had a designated psychiatrist who would periodically visit. I opened up about the absurdities of my life: being told I was the chosen one, feeling pressure to do something great, finding society to be oppressive, etc. In my desire to get genuine feedback, I overlooked the obvious cues that he was exhausted, pressed for time, and looking for any reason to prescribe medication. Everything I said was declared to be delusional; I was reported to be “bipolar,” “schizophrenic,” and, most plausibly, “hyperverbal.”


There were regular meals with limited catering to dietary preferences. “Vegan” was consistent, but not “gluten-free.”

Fortunately, they had oranges, apples, and nectarines available during every snack time, which was frequently declared throughout the day. Most patients coveted the sandwiches and plastic wrapped cookies & crackers. I opted for the fruit, of which the nurses gladly gave me extra.


There was an herb & flower garden we could visit during midday activity sessions. I picked edible flowers and herbs to add to meals, which I carried around with me for a couple days until the lunch where I offered them to others: an especially nervous-controlling nurse declared they were unsafe for consumption and banned me and everyone else from picking herbs from the garden. She said they sprayed they herbs with pesticides, but the nurses who tended the garden said they did not.


One of the nurses who was very supportive of my active lifestyle brought me a pair of yoga pants and a purple form-fitting shirt, so that I would be seen as an equal with the staff.


I had a blood test taken. An irritated psychiatrist delivered the result that I had a perfect panel.


It was an open secret that no one is allowed to leave John George without being medicated first.

I never consented to be medicated, so over a prolonged process of defending my rights in trials-by-phone, they declared I did not have rights to reject medication.

I was given two options: take the drugs orally or they would inject them intravenously.

I said, “I do not consent to taking drugs. I am a sober person.”

They begged me to just take the drugs orally, as they didn’t want to force drugs into me.

I said, “It is your choice to obey.”

Three nurses grabbed me and I went limp, so they dragged me into the room and injected antipsychotics into my butt.

I felt violated. My limbs moved slower. After processing my feelings with my mom on the phone, I relaxed and the effects of the drug lifted after a few hours.

The following night, a nurse made a pass at me in my bedroom, asking for me to take my clothes off. I declined firmly. I then reported it to the lead nurse, who reassigned him. It appeared unlikely that there would be any reprimand or effect on his employment status.


During this time, COVID-19 was causing staffing shortages. Some staff openly discussed the possibility of the facility shutting down; most patients present to these conversations were too medicated to listen or comprehend.


Before I was to leave, the psychiatrist insisted I promise to never go naked in public again.

First Kiss: ‘06 Fanime Con

I was 17 when when we were staying at the hotel at Fanime Con with the DVC Anime Club. He had a spot on the floor of the girl’s room.
When everyone else was out, I leaned off the bed and we kissed for the first time.

I had a dream, 2017

I had a dream that the Westfield Mall grew tons of plants.

A lush garden of plants and palm trees surrounds a greenhouse and building in an outdoor setting.

Divorce: 21 Dec ‘15

My Community College

“The Stanford of community colleges”

…is still just a community college, with a special arrangement with UC Berkeley to ensure transfers.

I entered classes at 16, starting with ASL, Algebra, Astronomy, and Psychology. I enjoyed practically all the topics and had positive interactions with nearly all of my instructors.

Outstanding classes:

  • Horticulture
  • Drama
  • Astronomy
  • Critical Thinking

I elected to take many psychology courses, and found it to be an interesting major despite being overly structured. However, I did not pursue an AA and instead focused on transferable units.

I joined Anime Club and developed a crush on a quiet dude, Chris. I followed him on campus a couple times, keeping a distance and observing his interactions with his friend. I befriended his older brother, who also was part of Anime Club, and he introduced us.

-More on that to come-

After reviewing colleges that served both our interests, we decided upon Humboldt State University.

My High School

In 2002, here sat my friends and I during lunch. The crew came from the middle school group: Kat, Kim, Brian, Lila, and Stephanie, and Matt. (Jacqueline went to a different high school.)

Staff of the school, in an attempt to tidy the campus, cut down the tree that we sat under. There was a remaining log🪵. To bring visibility to the issue, I carried the log to class for a few days. Having noticed that people were more engaged about the oddity of someone carrying a log rather than the issue of the cut tree, I stopped.

I was enrolled in the “Art Academy,” that had alternative project-oriented classes. I learned how to use Photoshop and gained experience in communicating artistic vision to varying audiences.

I participated in Anime Club and watched a lot of Naruto with my fellow “geeks.”

If I recall correctly (IIRC), in sophomore year a new member of the group, Stacy, was very inclusive and drew in a refined anime art style. I felt displaced, so in the beginning of junior year I started touring the social groups around campus. A favorite was A Hall, which included Art Academy friend, Brian D, and mega-crush, Jack.

Inspired by my sister who dropped out of high school to pursue college education early, I enrolled in community college and dropped out of high school in the middle of my junior year. On my last day of class there was a quiz in Mr Hagerstrand’s English class; I sat at my desk and ate the first page while my peers were working on it.

However, for the following few months I continued visiting the school during school hours to continue friendships and slowly ween off of the public school system.

My Middle School

Ugh, middle school.

I went to Pine Hollow Middle School way out in Concord because it was “nicer” than the middle school in Bay Point.

As I was wanting more independence, teachers wanted more engagement.

I nearly failed 6th Grade, but made it up when my dad forced me to finish several months of incomplete assignments over a weekend.

7th grade, Paulina and I stopped hanging out, so I sat alone. I did better in class. I developed a devastating crush on Jack, a brilliant and sociable student who would take lunch with the kids who passed around Magic: The Gathering cards.

After a few months of sitting alone at lunch, I was joined by Jacqueline, a shy girl who I stuck up for.

In 8th grade, I got straight-As and achieved the highest grade on a math placement test. At lunch, Jacqueline and I were joined by Kat, Kim, Brian, Lila, and Stephanie, who were already hanging out.

I had my own website that was a fan site dedicated to an anime called Slayers.