The deadly virus
I see that this virus is a wide spreading one. Rather, one fine day it caught inside the fat, slim, tall, short bodies of people around the world without any discrimination towards sex, caste or social class.
This makes people not to attend phone calls during certain times of the day and even if they attend scream "Gooaaaaaaaaalll" during the conversation thereby warning the caller not to repeat the crime thereon.
This virus, I observe, can sometimes lead to neglected kids to broken families and bitter divorces. People infected by the virus keep chanting the names of alien nations they have never ever gone to or intend to go to as if that would lead to their "Moksha" from this materialistic world.
I am proud of myself that I have managed to hide from the virus till date though there are times I was quite vulnerable. But the immunity is not gained by some expensive vaccination. It took years of self control and all sorts of spiritual & non spiritual disciplines to get to this stage.
Even if I search in the innermost & earliest part of my memory, nowhere I see myself posing for a photograph with a tennis racket or anything that remotely resembles a foot ball. Sport had always been as important as the GDP of Botswana for me.
I remember the time when Achan encouraged us to get up as early as 5.30 in the morning and go for a morning walk or run, that too when we were in the remote corner of India called Kodakara. That happened only on one day. The very next day I threatened to jump into the well if he dared wake me up at that unearthly time. Being a good Achan, he gave up.
My fourth standard teacher made the second attempt to dig out my hidden talents. She made me run with tens of other classmates in the pretext of choosing the fastest one to be sent to the district level competition. I knew it was a trap. Though I was a kid, I was a brainy kid. I fooled her by finishing exactly as the last one out of around fifty kids. (I still remember the face of that toothless, spectacled brat who laughed at me for that).
My brother cajoled me into being a wicket keeper at times. The moment I saw Achan starting his balling action, I would run as fast as I could so as not to hurt myself with his speeding ball. Mind you, that has got nothing to do with brother's batting abilities. But I always believed prevention is better than cure. Since the job description of the wicket-keeper didn't exactly match with my profile, I was fired.
My never-say-die Achan gave a second try on me by buying us a pair of Tennis rackets and some expensive ball. Brother and me ensured that Achan's money didn't go waste; brother by taking up Tennis as his latest fling and me by donating mine to any other neighborhood kid.
It was Amma's turn next. She tried to test my resolution by showing the black & white photo of a couple of college girls wearing a hockey uniform and pointing out to one thin, long-curly-haired and short girl with all sorts of emotions in her eyes and screaming "thats meeeeeeeeee". I commented that I have always liked black & white photos as they made me look fairer.
Under Achan's influence Amma told me bed time stories about her being the Caroms champion of her office and even showed me the stainless steel glasses & spoons she won for their inter-office competition. But I was determined not to indulge in such evil pleasures.
The moment my dear roomie start staring into the TV and get metamorphosed into one of those face-painted, weirdly tattooed people with a football haircut, I make sure that I leave the room and meditate against the temptation inside my bedroom.
Temptations will always be there, but here I am, standing proud, unaffected and determined to fight it at any cost. Atlast I have a cause to keep me going.