Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Perfect day

I was having my quiz on ‘HR management’. I am not sure about the title of the course but it was some ‘god level’ crap and with the aim to mug ad puke, I wake up at 6. I started the songs from a folder, which I downloaded last night. In that on particular song was really awesome. The name is ‘Aicha’. Initially I was not able to get lyrics or anything except music. After some exploration it comes out to be an Arabic song. When the day starts with a awesome song, I believe it’s a good day. Then I went to give paper and puked all the possible crap in paper and proceeded towards common room for the grand test match. I did some betting with my friend and I won 2 of them as India won the toss and chose to bat. Sehwag was playing awesome, jokes were going around and temp was cool. A perfect atmosphere to watch cricket. Then I had to leave for some work which was followed by an awesome lunch at ‘Adyar Bhawan’. Sandwich, chat and badam milk was gluttonized and finally I bring down my ass in my room. It was the movie time now. I started ‘American birds’. It was a pretty decent movie and seeing Mathew Perry (Chandler Bing – Friends) in such a different role was quite amazing. It was followed by some mugging stuff and the in realized –shit. I missed the match. I switch on to score. Now comes the news which made my day. Sachin crosses 12k and scored 88. I was like ‘Whoaaa!!” And ‘Shit!! I missed it.’ And ‘fuck!! fuck!! I am such an asole’

After all that shit, fuck, whoaa, I realized it’s the dinner time. Now the hunt begins for company and luckily one of my friends buzzed, proposing a self contry dinner at dominoes which later turned into a treat, so I was again ‘whoaa!!’ and ‘Thank God!!’
We came back and it was movie time again. I started ‘Almost famous’. Now this movie is like some movie, which you start and keep going on watching and suddenly you realize that end credits are coming and movie is over. I mean it in good sense that you don’t want them to end, not in the way ‘It’s over!! What were they trying to show?’ It was an amazing movie, with an amazing soundtrack, awesome acting and hot actress. What else you want. It was so smooth, so much that I didn’t even realize that I am watching it for 2 hours. Believe me it’s a must watch. And now comes the night part. I don share my bed time stories [:P]. so that was my perfect day - 17th October, 2008.

Harsha Bhogle on Sachin after he crosses 12K

It was a predictable, if slightly delayed, ascent. Sachin Tendulkar stands atop cricket's Everest but he isn't looking down at the cricketing world. That would be unlike him for he looks upon this game as a vehicle of fulfillment, as a servant rather than a master. There is a delicious irony to it. One of the most humble devotees of the game is himself an idol to so many.

Of course, he knew he was going to get there. Elbows and ankles and many lesser known joints that he brought into public consciousness were the only hurdles. He has always maintained that if he played enough he would get the record.

And so away from the public eye, in these last two or three years he worked on getting his body back into shape. Each time it was a more uphill battle than before, each time the odds against him returning as an equally good cricketer diminished but he kept trying.

He winced and he grimaced but his commitment to the game he loves saw him through. Tendulkar's phenomenal success lies as much in toil and perseverance and such hardy qualities as it does in the many gifts he has been bestowed with.

Yesterday he needed only 15 and instead of laying out a red carpet, Mohali did better. Daljit Singh gave him an excellent wicket to bat on, where the ball was coming onto bat and where shots could be played. This is where, these days, we see the original Tendulkar; on slow, low pitches where he has to bat to save a match he is like a miscast actor. Even there he delivers his lines, comes prepared, does what he has to but that is not him.

He would have loved the fact that he got to the record against Australia. They seek his wicket, the Aussies, they don't give him an inch, but they respect him mightily. Earlier this year in Australia, he got a standing ovation at every ground he played on and admitted later that it moved him enormously. Now he got 88 and showed he can still bat! An irreverent young generation, in a hurry to erase legend, will have to wait longer!

He is still only 35 but because he started so young, and couldn't sign a tour contract till he had scored three Test hundreds, it seems he has been around forever. On his first tour of England, he batted against Eddie Hemmings who started his first-class career seven years before Tendulkar was born. Now he shares a dressing room with young men who were in their nappies, or sometimes found even those unnecessary, when he scored his first century! But the zest, the limitless energy, the obsession with cricket hasn't dimmed. That, in itself, is extraordinary.

All his life he has had to confront mighty expectations; his own, which are scary, and those of his adoring fans which are probably scarier. It is a burden all great men have to carry and only some do lightly. Every time he has dropped a notch, India has moaned. We put up with corruption, don't mind poor toilets, manfully live through terrorism but cannot allow Tendulkar, in the end just a man, to fail occasionally. And yet the same people have loved him like no other cricketer in the history of the game has been loved.

The incomparable Don Bradman became part of folklore because he brought cheer to the people in depressing times. History has brought such depression upon us again as people see their savings evaporate, seemingly harmless cyclists become human bombs. There is much misery in our times. But there is also Tendulkar, who you know will be earnest and honest in his effort, who will let you forget your existence for a while, playing a real man in a real world.

Only a few are given the opportunity to spread such cheer. Through diligence and toil, and magical ability, Sachin Tendulkar has done that.