7 Dec 2013

#38 Closest packing

  Closest packing

    What does the above picture indicate? If you were or are a student of science stream, then you might have come across this picture quite frequently in your chemistry book. And if you were or are not a student of science stream, you don’t have to worry about not being able to comprehend the scientific terms that you may confront in this post later. I don’t want to limit my writing to the technology part. The experiences of my life provide me the topics to write on. So, this article is the consequence of such incident provoking me to befriend those writing materials- pen and paper.

              The article is dedicated to the economic institution of India- Bank-The bank of SBI situated in the campus of the institution where I’m studying. Surprised at the title of this article? You should not be as the further description will give you a fair idea behind choosing this title. This article is an agglomeration of different experiences at the bank of our institution and especially during the period of registration. I’m going to discuss about few topics and concepts of chemistry as the title of this article derived from that. Don’t worry- I won’t make the script quite complex and chemistry is an interesting stuff to study through analyzing. I came across the term “closest packing” and studied in detail about it when I was in std.XII. It was the part of the syllabus and was very meticulously described in the text book of NCERT(as always). To relate it further, this section was given in the chapter SOLID STATES in which we came across different configurations of crystals in solid. It was not enough. Many other aspects such as packing efficiency, void (tetrahedral, octahedral) were also covered. At first it seemed too boring and cumbersome to absorb the concepts but thanks to the Chemistry teacher at school who simplified the concepts through some of his self invented techniques. Closest packing depicts the way in which different atoms are arranged in all dimensions (in 3D to be precise) in a solid crystal leaving behind minimum empty spaces called voids
       I have to end discussing chemistry stuffs here as the purpose of this article will change. We were motivated to visualize the concept in real life, for example linear arrangement can be visualized in terms of people standing in a row,2D arrangement as carom striker kept in a box(without stacking), 3D arrangement as balls packed on a square box. Now, I want to apply the concept of closest packing to real life and how I’m going to relate that to my experiences at Bank which is interesting and hilarious.

   The sight of bank during registration of the semester is worth watching as it resembles the picture given at the starting of this article in the way if you visualize replacing those spherical objects with human beings. It happens because of the limited space available in the bank. The half opened railing leading a small entrance to the bank adds to the outcries of the students busy in getting their work done. It would never be wrong to regard the employees of the bank as GODs as the condition of tired and exhausted students standing in a line for a long time seems no different from those of the devotees, who have come from distant land, longing to have DARSHAN(glance: here I’m connecting it with the completion of task)of GOD . So, for us students, Bank (to be more specific, SBI) becomes a HOLY place of PILGRIMAGE during this period. We avail such closest facility twice in a year as we write two semesters in a year as per the designed curriculum of Engineering. It is the place and perfect moment where you can experience what breathlessness (quite naturally and at free of cost) and patience actually mean. Many create all sorts of chaos by disturbing the queue and illegally getting their work done with the help of their friends (like passing their documents to their friends standing at the starting of the queue and that guy at the beginning of the queue very obediently does all the work for many of his close friends so that he qualifies a test to be regarded as a friend- in -need –is- a- friend- indeed). Amidst, all these the guard very intelligently closes the entrance door to regulate the number of students entering this little place. Hats off to that idea of guard, if he had not done that social service instantly, we would have died of suffocation and most importantly I would have not been alive to narrate that incident to you. So, it’s equivalent to an i-should-not-be-alive incident for many of us. We pray that the power supply inside this TEMPLE (not to these temporary GODs but to the ALMIGHTY) stays intact until the work gets over. It’s again a challenge to get out of the Bank through that cramped small exit (exit and entrance are same) pushing yourself hard against the agitated multitudes queuing up adamantly. Once you are out of the bank, you experience an inexplicable bliss of breathing in fresh air which you’ve not availed for last 2-3 hours. Then the rest procedure of registration is very simple.

    Whenever I go to bank, the memory of this incident gets lightened up. This is one of those incidences of my college days which have inspired me to pen down few lines on it. I hope that you enjoy reading this one.

Have a nice day!!


Swati Sarangi


  1. Yeah, I have also faced such kind of situation...One can apply the theories and principles of physics, chemistry and mathematics by watching the queue in bank...(especially queuing theory)...And you have applied chemistry here.... I would recommend you to apply Physics and Mathematics in your next article.....

    Nicely described....:)

  2. nice writeup, applying chemistry theory in banking :)

    1. haha.. my first ever attempt to write under the genre- Humor.. Thanks for reading this one..

  3. Replies
    1. It's a great complement for every writer to know that the readers have enjoyed reading.. Thanks :)

  4. The perfect blend of sarcasm, humor and story telling skills.......
    Our life is like a X-tal lattice and situations are like atoms arranged in different configurations, be it body centred, hexagonal or face centred........ It is the binding energy( our mind and soul) which maintains the stability

    1. I'm elated to find a comment like this. I'm thankful to the situation which prompted me to write this article. Thanks for reading this one. :)