Monday, May 31, 2010

Sachin Tendulkar Must Die...

... a hero.

No, I don't hate Sachin. Agreed, I'v never been a crazy fan, but that was more because of how silly the game of cricket is rather than the man himself. So read the full heading, Sachin Tendulkar must die... a hero.

Sachin is awesome. Very awesome. Agreed?
Some would say, too awesome. Agreed?
I agree.
Who else do we have? We... yes, I mean we Indians. Who else have we got to idolize, to worship, to look up to...
No one.

Once upon a time, there was a kook called Bejan Daruwala. Every year this fruit predicts that India will become a global superpower. I guess he figures it is worth being wrong every year for 50 years straight than to miss the one year when it does happen... I admit that does make good business sense. But India will never be a superpower. Atleast not yet. Because we are too sensible... way too sensible.

More Indians of that generation are likely to point out a slight criticism of Mahatma Gandhi, that he allowed the partition to happen, than are Americans to point out a flaw in one of their shining gems of a role model, Saint Kurt Cobain. Now that might be because there 4 Indians for every Americans, but that's not the point I'm trying to make. Whether the partition was his error in judgment is irrelevant, if an overrated suicidal crack head can be an inspiration to people, uniting the most diverse country in the world to overthrow the greatest empire in the world without firing a single shot, should have made Gandhi untouchable. But it did not.
It only got him killed.

Why is America the most powerful nation in the world today? Right after its independence, US tried desperately to be the cool new kid on the block. But it took them a hundred years to figure out the formula, when they entered their so-called 'Age of Heroes'.
1 part blind nationalism, 1 part surreal hero worship, sprinkle in some astute publicity and mix in a  pool of corn-n-beef meathead populace and stir for a few decades... how do you like your heroes? They took their rag-tag but (usually) good hearted bunch of leaders, buried their flaws six feet under and publicized the holy fucking crap out of their achievements. Rockstars, astronauts, sportsmen, presidents, moviestars, businessmen, scientists... everyone could be a hero. And everyone was. 
The century of Einsteins and Elvises, of Jordans and Jacksons, of Neil Armstrong and Pam Anderson.
And you know what is the one thing common that all these heroes could do. Make more heroes.
And the new heroes were for real... inspired self-made heroes. Heroes that perhaps stood on shaky shoulders but through their eyes mankind saw what it was capable of accomplishing, if only for just a short  tumultuous century.

America is past its Age of Heroes. Their inspiration died with the Cold war, the remnants of the zeal of the great Age butchered and divided up by giant corporations who have now collectively reduced the American dream to Wall Street job and celebrity magazines. And this veiled hive of commercialization now threaten to wage their sponsored war on the world from their product placed boardrooms using their billboard tanks and logo army suits. War Inc., watch it, very cool movie, Imdb ratings notwithstanding.

But I don't give a shit about America. India... yes, back to India. Post Independence there was no cause no reason to be a hero anymore. Aimless we wander through our lives much like Americans, dissecting every candidate of heroism with such crushing ruthlessness that, one mistake, one misstep, one falter, brings on the modern day witchhunt... you can't judge an artist by his personality but you do anyway. Every upright politician, every talented artist, every beautiful person, crushed under the weight of a billion judgmental eyes.

Like Sachin. Surely you remember when you abused and criticized and decried Sachin every time he got out at 90+ scores, or failed to convert his century into a  team victory.
Remember? Of course you don't. Because you have the memory of a goldfish with ADD.  Because celebrity devouring is all that you learnt from America. But he didn't curl up and die like the rest of them, did he? 20 yrs ago a boy of 16 was on tv and he blew your minds away. In 10-15 yrs you forgot all the mindblasting, groundbreaking and Shoaib Akhtar/Shane Warne -smashing he treated us to and tried your best to crucify him. So what does he do? He takes a break, comes back twice as old as he was when he first made you buy a TV, and sodomizes the half empty glass that's your brain.

Sachin is right now our only legitimate hero. The kind who can convince a whole generation to drop out of school and follow their dreams. A handful of such men can start the avalanche that can make a global superpower in 50 years. Believe it, coz 11 guys on June 25, 1983, heroes who toppled Vivian's Invincible Windies, had a lot to do with creating the very hero we see today. Pay it forward, as they say.

And that's why he needs to live... and die, a hero. I wish he could stay around forever, I wish he could be inspiring, uniting, indeed mesmerizing an entire nation for all eternity. But he cant, because every Federer must eventually spawn his Nadal, and every Tiger Woods will have a scantily clad skeleton in his closet. And when that happens, their mortality will be exposed for all to see. And Indians are not as delusional as Americans to worship a mortal man. No... Sachin has survived everything we threw at him... he is the hero we needed, he must now be the God we deserve. A God who by his very existence spawns a whole generation of Indian heroes, and we shall see the pride and glory of India restored. I'm not saying it will be easy, but it can be done, so just stay with me on this one last pitch.

Sachin must win the World Cup for India.
But if he plays or indeed does anything at all after this feat, he is liable to fail, to be judged.
No, Gods dont age.

Sachin must win the World Cup for India... and die in the process.

It must be the final against either Pakistan or Australia, it must be the last over with atleast 25 runs needed to win. He must hit a couple of the most amazing sixes in history with the balls shot straight out of grounds and never found again, so that the legend, and fake replicas, of the lost sach-sixer balls live on after him and are distributed as prasad in the Sachin temples we build thereafter. He must have already been retired hurt thrice and thrice returned to play, by now with internal and external bleeding. He must limp every run and yet his bat must swing faster than the eye can see. With atleast 5 or 6 runs to win The last ball must blaze a trail of fire hurtling towards him. And our deity must nod his bat to the crowd one last time, before blasting the ball into 6 pieces all of which must fly out of the stadium. The crowd must stare in astonished silence watching every piece of the ball vanish over the horizon before erupting in a cheer, 1 billion strong. And our hero, our God, our saviour must smile weakly in satisfaction and relief. The arm would move over to reveal that the impact shattered the faithful and iconic MRF bat into pieces as well, pieces on which he now stands impaled. As the entire stadium mows down barricades and rushes onto the field towards their saviour, he would stumble and fall but he must not hit the ground... as he fades away his last image must be the whole nation lifting him up above them, where he shall remain, immortalized, pristine, absolved of the past or the future, frozen immaculate.

If life were a movie, Daruwala would finally be right someday.
But its not. We cannot expect a man to sacrifice himself for us, just to be our posthumous God.
We can always hope though...


  1. On many points raised by u I agree

  2. awesome! N so true. U really shud write more often :)

  3. Thanks for the comments Sadiya. I am trying to start writing more often... so stay tuned... :)

  4. Aasan nahin hai Insaan ,
    Devta sada hum dhoondte rahe.

    Great post Niranjan ,very well put.

  5. ummm kapil won a world cup where is he?
    i do get your point. India's problem is not that it doesn't have other Sachin Tendulkars but its just that people don't care to look or search.

    its easier and convenient to have just one.

    loved ur header pic

  6. why don't you repost this entry, i thought blogadda mentioned previously posted entries don't count.

  7. Anonymous1:18 AM

    Hope keeps the human spirit alive.

  8. this was an awesome post.. really loved it.. and agree with it totally