I am the most unlikely person to be writing a post on the subject of cricket. My family would find this quite unbelievable and the husband will most definitely fall off his chair. There is a simple reason to that. I do not watch or the follow the game as much. I have always only been surrounded by the madness around it.
So why am I writing today? The mood is so somber after yesterday’s game that I just felt like jotting a few lines. If you are sulking and disappointed, it is very understandable. If you are blaming a certain actress, that is SO lame. If you are still critiquing the team, remember everyone has a bad day. Be kind to them. It was after all a game. We all have bad days at work and we all goof up. (And please don’t roll your eyes on that statement.)
Now that it’s all over, what I am going to miss the most is the madness around it.
At my home, all the laptops, ipads, remotes, iphones sat huddled at one spot in the living room. The backup mechanism, if one device fails to airplay, switch to another before a single more run is scored. This was crucial, I deciphered. The television set to the loudest decibel, I overheard the man hollering instructions to the player. “They cannot hear you honey,” I pacified him several times but his ears were deafened to anything but the commentators.
I sat beside him reading some of the Facebook updates from my friends.
A few people were asking a friend to sit on the corner spot of the large couch at her home. This is where she sat for all the previous matches and India won the game.
As the match began, someone wrote, “Hope you are sitting at the same spot. Please don’t get up.”
“I am all set with snacks and drinks here,” she replied with a picture of her sitting on a large red couch, surrounded with Lays and Namkeens.
Fifteen minutes later, “Hope you are not moving.”
“I am just breathing,” she replied.
“Did you just take a loo break? We lost a wicket. Sigh! “
“I did. Ok, no more loo breaks I guess,” she responded with a big smiley.
Then there was someone who wore the same blue Madras check shirt for all the matches, his friends believing in the magic of his blue shirt. Yesterday his last status update said, “Packing the shirt away for the next WC.”
The shirt gave out a silent cry saying please don’t do this to me. What wrong have I done?
I grew up in a family where there was no dearth of such madness. My mother’s family is full of cricket fanatics. As a young girl I remember, my Dida (grandmother) cooking for the day, finishing all her chores before a match so that she could watch the game uninterrupted. My Dadu (grandfather) and my mom’s siblings would holler and scream much as I see my husband doing now. With the five of them in the room, the commentators could seek retirement.
A small radio would be placed near the loo so that if someone took a break, they did not have to miss out on anything. The radio would be carried into the kitchen when food was being warmed or the tenth cup of chai was been made. But barring that much activity, everything was pretty much at standstill on those days.
I always prayed for India to win simply because that meant samosas, gulabjamuns and ladoosfor snack, a bit of fireworks in the neighborhood occasionally and a cheerful happy family. The sadness created in the house by a mere lost game was too overwhelming to bear back then and even today.
The sadness can be comprehended but a lost game does not deserve the trolls. If we take a look back at all the fun and entertainment that the “men in blue” have provided in this world cup and in the years before, a few lost games, a few drop catches and a few early run outs should make no difference.
So for now, I will give the man some company for the finals on Saturday night and soak in a bit more of this madness. I will certainly miss the sound of “It’s a out! It’s a out!” in the middle of the night. I will miss all the FB and twitter updates from my friends and all the cheering sounds from the neighbor’s house. I hope the guy with blue madras check shirt does not really wait another 4 years to adorn it. I am glad my friend will sit wherever she likes on her lovely red couch for the finals.
And when this is all over, I will have the husband, the TV and all the remotes in our home back so that I indulge in some binge watching on Netflix.
Written By : Piya Mukherjee Kalra. Read more of her posts here.