Sunday 15 May 2016

Introvert Nation - The Pilot

I was a kid - age in single digits – when I watched Clive Lloyd running to the middle of the pitch, Kumar with his hands aloft, Kambli crying and Eden garden on fire - literally on fire.

It didn’t matter to me then - nothing more than the fact that we won. But as time moves on you know more and know enough to know that time changes nothing. Indians are crazy about bringing trophies home (cricket, hockey or Sitha) or else setting things on fire or throwing rocks. That’s how we reached the 96 World Cup final (and how we have Rumassala) and as they say it rest is history.

If you have read so far, read on. But I must say I have no intention of mocking anyone, but I am entitled to my views, and you to comedy.

I read this book by a journalist who traversed the subcontinent capturing the 96 world cup; both cricket and politics surrounding it. Among many interesting stories was his visit to Colombo on the day following mighty little Lankans being crowned champions of the Cricket world. Colombo was back at its usual, apart from the traces of celebrations the night before. Even cricket was going on, one featuring a schoolboy Mahela Jayawardane a player for the future, as he noted.

That is a world apart from what we saw in India, September 2007. Indians know how to celebrate, they know how to go gung-ho; take Holi, take Kholi.

Regardless of your belief on whether Sri Lankans decent from Indians or not, cricket fans had been at the either end of the spectrum. In 2000’s Sri Lankan fans were devoted and respectable fans welcoming their heroes back; sun or rain, with or without trophy. 

Even our traditional sports are strange in the eyes of modern world. The village randomly divide themselves to Udupila and Yatipila. If Udupila wins it is a good omen for the whole village. And they almost always win. Fair game too. 

2011 gave a glimpse of Cricket craziness in Colombo. But Mumbai is much bigger, populous and crazier.

Unfortunately it didn’t stop there. The hyper connectivity of 2010’s has given the lazy an opportunity to vent out steam without picking up a stone or lighting a match. But words hurt as much. Words hurt more.

To be honest, I am scared that this hyper connected society would pull apart a culture; a society once was happy to accept victory or loss, joy and sad, fame and obscurity, at the same stead. It is not fair when you can hide behind a screen and say what you want to say and do not have to own up. Has the artificial society in social media tipped over an introvert nation? What does this mean beyond sports?

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