As a part of this "naukri pakdo" preparation , I sat down to work on my resume yesterday. I looked at a blank word document and typed down each and every achievement of mine , including being a class monitor in the fifth standard . But even after that , page space enough to fit in the entire voters list of Gurgaon remained. I felt so small at my extra minimised set of achievemnts and suddenly had a very 'sharminda karne wali' realisation - I do not have even a bacteria -sized achievement to show in the world of sports. Not even a third prize in one of those junior school frog races where they give Pencilboxes and Crayons as prizes .
When I was born , I was a baby with baby fat enough to make butter naans for half the colony. And that is all right , I guess babies are like pay cheques - they look good when they are fat. But hanuman jee kee leela dekho , I was born into a family with a grandmom who fed grains to sparrows in the morning and oily food to her grandson for the rest of the day. So at a tender age , when I had no nails or teeth to scratch and bite in self defence and could just murmer "nana..mamama...umm" ( No I am not hungry ) , she made me eat and eat to make sure I retained a major part of my precious baby fat even when I entered school .
So that made me as much "suitable-for-sports" as Nana Patekar is for the role of Leo Caprio in Titanic. Like any 'deshbhakt' little fat indian kid , cricket was my first love , with Sridevi coming a close second ( yeah , those were the 80s , when sridevi pranced around in frilly tops and danced violently ).
And cricket was fun , as long as I was watching it on TV. When I went out to play , tall and lean boys gave me that "Go play Ludo" look . My cricketing memories are majorly composed of standing near the little green row of plants which served as the boundary of our park-cum-field. Sacchi bolta hoon , batting and bowling ka to naam-o-nishaan nahi . I just had to retrieve the ball when it crossed the boundary . I felt like a golden retreiver without a tail . I was always the curly haired little kid who was pleading- "Ayye bunty , bat de na , mujhe batting karne de na" , "Ayye rahul , ball de na , mujhe spin balling aati hai acchi wali " , "Ayye Vikky , mere andar ke cricketer ka gala matt ghott. mujh par taras khaa zaalim. Mujhe batting open karrne de ".
But no bunty or Rahul or Vikky ever ate any taras on the budding and well hidden cricketer in me . So one day I decided ki bhaiyya , bott ho gaya public mein humiliation , boundary ke side mein fielding karte karte budaapa aa jayega .And I hung my bat and walked away into the sunset , never to return to cricket again .
Since then , I have had myself humiliated , laughed at , beaten and thrown away out of a lot of sporting careers. Kasam Michael Jackson ki , there seems to be something which makes me a loser at every sport I have played . I have run miles zigzagging the field without getting to place the fraction of a foot on the football . On the tennis court , my opponent's serves were always far enough from me , enough to drive a yellow sardarji driven school bus through the space between me and the tennis ball . The only hockey swipe I have taken led to the stick flying off my hands and hitting the instructor in his groin , almost ending his family plans and definitely ending my hockey plans .
Ok , it is six in the morning and I think I will go for a little jog around the campus now. No no no , do not get me wrong , athletics is not my next sporting passion .
Before I go , a very very Happy New year to you buddy .You be the good person you have always wanted to be , and if you see a little fat kid pleading before big and lean guys and saying "Mujhe batting karne do please" , walk over , slap the big kids unke respective kaan ke neeche and hand over the bat to the little fat kid with a smile , and lastly , maintain peace in the new year .
Maybe my son will grow up to be some star soccer player who is signed up by a fancy cclub and makes girls scream at super sonic levels when he steps out of his red sports car , or some champion boxer who chomps on ears and strips topless and beats dark and bald muscular men on TV. But you wont see me on ESPN or any sports channel in this lifetime of mine , unless I am picked up by some channel to dress into a noodle straps blouse and replace Mandira Bedi , which , I somehow feel , is slightly improbable .Have Fun.