Friday, 2 July 2010


I keep thinking 'ooh i must write that in my blog' as I read something. Then I think 'naa. let me finish the book and then I can write a proper summary' - of course that never really happens. By the time the book is done with, my opinions of various things read along the way have changed. I have forgotten how I felt at the beginning of the book. I have started to even dislike it a bit. I never seem to like a book as much towards the end as at the start. And also, I don't do reviews of movies or books or stuff like that, generally. It feels like too much effort!

Just to mix things up a bit, I thought of talking about what I am currently reading. A running book (its highly unlikely that a running book ends as well as it begins, unless, of course, its the Murakami, that genius). It doesn't matter what it is. Or who it is by (you know its not the Murakami, of course). But its super inspiring! Sports stuff always is, to me. All the sports movies my husband has made me watch over the years. The books by all the basketball legends that I have managed to plod through despite the poor English and organisational glitches. And more recently, all the books by runners I have read. Oh! And not to mention that article about Zola Budd I chanced upon in Runner's World in October last year. Just super cool!

It made me think about my own career as a sports person. Or the lack of my own career as a sports person. Some of these people seem to hint at a genetic predisposition to sports. I had none. Dad used to claim some prowess at Tennis and Swimming, but I never saw that side of him, really. Mum wore a half-saree to school and though she is good at Yoga and can really walk a fair bit for an ancient person, is not particularly sporty. None of my various relatives, except one cousin of dad's who was supposed to be brilliant at Kho-Kho (but he doesn't seem to have done much, and well, he died young), accomplished anything by way of sports. It was thus a pain in the neck to describe to them my passion for basketball. And then later for the guy-who-played-basketball. Of course, the fact that I did not grow much (or at all) was another problem, in both cases (He is SO tall! Well, I will soon cut him down to size, I would reply, though I DID NOT mean that). This still is.

It was in the VI std. that I started on basketball. Initially, as in most coaching I have gone through, the coach made us just run. It would drive the boys nuts because I could beat them. They would go crazy the next day, trying to beat me. But there was always a bunch of boys I could defeat rather easily, and I am sure they all hated me (probably still do!). I was not particularly skilled in basketball though, I worked hard, somehow always preferring the running parts of the coaching to the others. Now I think I do okay, I can shoot decently (for a short person of middle-age) and dribble reasonably with my right. I guess there was a point of time in the past when I was good. But it was when I was in the 9th std. My parents refused to even consider sending me to the camp in Bangalore. I was not overly keen anyway, I figured it would be painful, and was studying for various things, which was the reason I used to wake up at 5 am, drink milk, study for a bit, cycle off with best friend to the courts, sweat buckets, return home, shower, eat, pick up bag, cycle off to school (and then take a nice nap in class)...

At the coaching, after a point, I was with the girls from the sports hostel. They were all nice athletic strong meat-eating girls. I was a skinny vegetarian kid who had eaten maybe one egg her entire life. But the coaches liked me. I am not sure if it was just my crazy enthusiasm for running and sweating; my geekiness in listening closely to their advice, or the fact that I was not supposed to really be there. Girls from our type of families, who were good in studies, and not looking for athletic scholarships for college, did not show up day after day to sweat it out. I think it was something like that! Skill-wise I am not sure I was that great, really!

The sub-text of it all was irrelevant to me. The coach had once come home to ask my parents to send my sis to some camp. He was politely turned down. I felt super good though because it meant I stood some chance, genes-wise. And also, I adored and worshipped her. (Now I just love her!). As for me, I just was looking to be out there, wind in my face. I had people come up and yell at me about studying for the JEE or something like that. I was doing that. I loved that too and was doing that as well as I could, and my early morning jaunt only made me concentrate better, never tired me out or anything!

This is getting too long. I did not want to say all this stuff, at least not now. I just wanted to say that I like those books, mostly 'cause they make me feel like I am not the only insane person around. That there are insaner folks out there. With the difference that they all manage to accomplish something using that insanity, whereas, I, just, well, run. And hope that my past mistakes and irresponsibility towards my ankles will somehow be forgiven and forgotten...


ludwig said...

> But there was always a bunch of
> boys I could defeat rather easily,
> and I am sure they all hated me
> (probably still do!).


kbpm said...

oh ludwig you stop that. you know you can kick my ass anytime.

dipali said...

Embrace and cherish your insanity- it is so rare:)