Warne: The Maverick Magician

Maverick by persona, completely orthodox with work, that’s Shane Keith Warne for you. Just flight it up, bowl the basic orthodox leg breaks, back your instincts, stick to the right line-length, and let the batsman do something out of the box– That’s Warnie’s fishing mantra, which fetched him unprecedented success. 1001 International Wickets! Period!

He’s done everything off the field; the gentleman’s game inhibits a player to.
You name it – betting scandals, smoking pot with teens, sleeping around with random women to dating the Hurelys; he’s done it all. But the best part, he didn’t let it affect his game. That needs balls of titanium. He’s uncultured, but also the greatest ever exponent of the most refined art in cricket – leg-spin bowling.

Truly speaking, some people have larger than life personality and they should live with it to bring out the best from them on the battlefield. It’s like taking aggression out of Kohli’s instincts, it shan’t work out! Warnie is an epitome of a man-child who refused to adultify! Many criticize him for that but those people never went on to bowl the ball of the century!

Shane Warne

Warne in a Trillion. Pic Source : Times

It wasn’t easy it all for him but he just did what he knew best – Bowl Classic Leg Spin! He didn’t have a great rapport with the wicket-keeper, Adam Gilchrist, the selectors or the skippers. He was never made the captain, even though his cricketing credentials destined him to, which was later crucified at the IPL level, when he gave Rajasthan Royals their maiden cup as a skipper.But his skill and determination overpowered everything! A large part of Warne’s success should be attributed to essential simplicity of his acceptance that once he figured what worked for him, he spent years working to maintain it rather than expand it. If you follow, Mayank Austen Sufi’s digital writings, you’d relate better with me. These guys redefine the terms “consistency and simplicity”.

More than the mind-boggling stats, I regard him as the one of those legends with panache for quality work, just like Howard Roark from the creations of Ayn Rand. He was an individualist, who refused to abide by the rules of the society. He was the John Galt, who owned those 22 yards, the way he wanted to. Post retirement as well, he’s still regarded as the most known face and brand in Australian circuit. People fade off – be it Taylor, Waugh, Clarke but Warnie is still going and spinning hearts. I think that only happens when you are yourself!

The point I’m trying to make to everyone, including myself is how we care about perceptions, assumptions, our prejudices, our shortfalls, our public image; if we care even 1% on our strengths and individuality, we shall sail well in life! You think I’m kidding and writing this motivational piece, here are the numbers for all of those driven by data, rather than Cricketing intellect.

  • He’s one of just two bowlers to have taken more than 1000 wickets in his career
  • He’s taken 708 Test scalps. Again the second most by anyone in the format behind only Muralitharan (800)
  • 37 Five-wicket hauls and 1761 maidens in Tests, yet again the second most by any bowler
  • He’s grabbed 138 wickets in the fourth innings – another world record
  • 96 – The number wickets taken by Warne in Tests in 2005, the most by a bowler in a calendar year

We can call him a cheat, a playboy, a fatass, a rebel, but he’s still chilling with a beer in his hand, a babe by the side; whereas we are fretting over internet, cursing the damn keyboard and life of ours. He’s Warne in a Trillion! He’s a fuckin’ Magician!


Douglas Jardine – The Mastermind behind Bodyline!

Sir Don Bradman? Who Bradman! I will deal with him said the angry Doug to himself before the encounter, devised a game plan and kept Bradman, someone who had played with their reputation; under check and went on to win the improbable and the most controversial series ever for England. With that triumph, Douglas Jardine was rightly hailed as the greatest English villain of all-time for using the Bodyline tactics.

What is Bodyline?

Bodyline is the term coined to describe fast leg theory bowling with half slingers targeted at the body of a batsman for the purpose of crabbing the room to swing the free flow of the bat and purposefully making him play. There can be only three possibilities on that bowling attack. One- The leather hits your body. Two – You try and defend it and end up getting caught by the close-in fielders surrounding your arse on the legside. Third – you are anyway caught while pulling it away in the deep. There is no escape from the death trap! In short, you are doomed!


Contrary to the beliefs, I do not see it as a heinous act, rather it was smart maneuver that left the Aussies bamboozled. It was strictly professional of Doug to analyze someone’s game so thoroughly and come up with something this intrigue! You need balls to do it and the best part, he pushed the envelope within the lawsuit, far enough to intimidate the opponent without breaking any rule of the game. Moreover, others had no right to call him unprofessional as majority of the folks already had half their focus outside the game – on their part-time jobs while Doug was busy sniffing victory. Lest he wasn’t a rat!

Why the Fuss?

England went on to win the series 4-1 leaving over two dozen Australians injured .The bodyline attack led by Harold Larwood with Bill Voce, Bill Bowes and Gubby Allen in the clan gave major injury blows to the Kangaroos. Woodfull, the Australian skipper and Oldfield were the most affected ones. Woodie was struck 7 times in 4 Tests, his opening partner Bill Ponsford 6 in three and for Oldfield I don’t even have the count. Larwood, the lightening quick pacer gave some brutal blows to the opposition’s skipper in the mid rib section and the worst of the lot was Olly, the man famously known for the fractured skull.

There was a popular saying at that time –

With a prayer and a curse they prepare for the hearse, undertakers look on with broad grins. Oh they’d be a lot calmer in Ned Kelly’s armor, When Larwood the wrecker begins.

No wonder the fury was so intense that every available policeman was reinforced at the ground in case of a riot. I think he should be renamed to Harold Bruises Larwood.

The aftermath –

Statistically it was a win over Bradman. Bradman just averaged 56 (his all time low).Here is a sneak peak at the dip in the averages of some Aussie Batsmen.stats boydline

  • Fielding rules were changed. Not more than two fielders were allowed between the square leg umpire and the wicket-keeper.
  • Only a maximum of two bouncers per over were made legitimate.
  • Political and economic relations between the two nations hit the rock bottom.
  • Larwood who was the right hand of Jardine, always backed his skipper (as Jardine cared and fought for the team from the front, which was appreciated by the Harold) decided to quit the game on a dignified ground, never played thereafter and still hasn’t given a rat’s ass to the Aussie media and the their criticism. Looks scary right! And that is exactly why that series was so crucial and people like me write about it every now and then.

Let’s have a look at the some of the behind the scenes moments. Gubby Allen, the second highest wicket taker for the Englishmen did protest against the tactic and never bowled a bodyline attack. The Nawab of Pataudi did refuse to field in the leg trap and the English manager Pelham Warner had visited Woodfull after he was hit on the heart to which he had got a cold response.

“I don’t want to see you Mr. Warner or any of your teammate. We despise you. There are two teams out there, one is playing cricket and the other is making no attempt to do so. The game is too good to be spoilt. It’s time some people got out of it”.

Well, on a crazy note, Jardine always stood by his words, threatened to back out on logical grounds, inspired the English political delegates to maintain the same cold stand for the wirings that happened after the Adelaide Test and did make the Aussies bend down. Hail Doug – the badass, knowingly or unknowingly you have given us the most talked about event in the Cricket History.

Chahal & Kuldeep: The Wolves of Tossing-it-Up Street

In terms of energy burned, meat gained and overall effectiveness of the kill, wolves do best hunting in pairs. We’ve seen quite a lot of lethal examples earlier but the way young Chahal and Kuldeep are keeping the oppositions unchallenged, this is no mercy. Just  a little background. Chahal is the only person to represent India in Chess and Cricket. Chahal is one of only two players in T20 Cricket history to have taken a 6-wicket haul. His wizcraft is totally evident when he holds the white leather in his hands. Kuldeep on the other hand is India’s only Chinaman bowler and is the third bowler for India to take a hat-trick in an ODI after Chetan Sharma and Kapil Dev.

The Indian wrist-spinning duo has humbled and humiliated the Proteas in their own backyard. I agree, ABD and Faf could have shown some resilience but these new-gen spinning duo would have owned them as well.

There’s a great deal of difference between Chahal-Kuldeep and Ashwin-Jaddu or Kumble-Harbhajan. These two youngsters never look to contain, rather their only focus is to toss it up, play it brave, back their instincts and go for wickets; right from ball one.



You’d be astonished to know that these two have just played 9 ODIs together and have already established a reputation of being the best in the business. Not to be politically incorrect, they have literally shown the door to the stalwarts like Ashwin and Jadeja in the blues. People and experts say that it’s the new age rotation policy to keep the squad fit but I don’t seem to agree.

One thing which backs them to be fearless is the faith of Virat Kohli, the skipper. When the captain tells you that you will play every game, irrespective of the runs you leak, a bowler’s confidence reaches the pinnacle of self-belief. Kohli, who himself is all about intensity, aggression and delivering things; has imbibed the same grit in the team. Not to forget Dhoni’s mentoring from behind the stumps. Ball by ball you could see him guiding these wristies. With very little time they have spent with Mahi, they’ve listened to his insights, adapted and executed with great precision. They’ve been quick learners.

Another factor, which has helped them thrive, is the support from the quicks. Bumrah and Bhuvi have always given early break-throughs to the team. So, when these spinners come to bowl, the opposition is always one or two down minimum. They don’t have to start from the scratch; which wasn’t the case earlier.

Numbers don’t lie either. Chahal-Kuldeep duo has grabbed 35 wickets together in 9 games at an applauding strike rate of 24.55 with a meager economy rate of 4.75. Working in tandem and complementing each other is an art, which only a few can cherish. If you look at the strike rates of Ashwin-Jadeja and Kumble- Harbhajan, 40.64 and 46.17 tell a different tale. Yuzdeep duo strikes a wicket after every fourth over whereas the others used to do it around the seventh. It is a huge difference, in terms of the denting the morale.

Chahal is a very street-smart cricketer. He doesn’t change his pace that much — varies it from 85 kmph to 95 kmph. He’s skiddish. Kuldeep on the other hand, relies much on his variations of dip and aerial movement. Flighting the ball and putting right on money i.e. the areas where the batters are uncomfortable playing; is his forte. While most wrist-spinners are quicker through the air, the ability to slow it up and generate more turn even on unresponsive tracks has worked in the favour of India’s new-age heroes.

The wrist spinners have changed the dynamics the way modern day battles are fought. Post 2015, the wrist spinners have killed 81 preys at a strike rate of 27 while finger spinners had to work a lot harder.(58 kills at a strike rate of 52).

Chahal and Kuldeep are the batting equivalents of Sehwag & Sir Viv; where the default mode is set to attack. From Richie Benaud, a pioneer wrist spin, to the magical Shane Warne, the flame of wrist spin has found a wick in every generation and the duo is doing their bit with pride and valour.

They might not have the built and physical power but they have fitness, brains and a true grit by their side; which has even the rattled the South African spine and have left them bamboozled. Which one turns, which goes is a googly, which is the top-spinner, which is the flipper; they absolutely have no fucking clue about it.

These two have assassinated the sense of judgment of the South African Team.  As DiCaprio states, successful people are 100% convinced that they are masters of their own destiny, they’re not creatures of circumstance, they create circumstance, if the circumstances around them suck they change them; these two are calculated and fierce gamblers, who are destined to win; on any pitch and any condition.

LiteratureSthan: Books, Beers and Beyond | JLF 2018

When a Methodist actor gets a standing ovation and the entire literary fraternity goes berserk by registering record attendance, shows that people have evolved and so is their taste in reading. This goes without a saying, Nawazzudin Siddiqui’s entry into JLF, the world’s greatest literary fest as Saadat Hassan Manto was a sight to witness.

People embraced the (to be) on-screen Manto with love and pride. I don’t think even a Shahrukh or Salman would’ve garnered the kind of response as he got. For those who don’t know, Manto was a rebel-writer and his short stories were brutal and would hit society right into the face. Toba Tek Singh, Kaali Shalwar and Thanda Gosht are some of his most proclaimed works. Do read them and let more people know of Manto’s world.


Not only Urdu or English, the fest was a magnum opus for other vernacular writers. The new-generation readers who’ve forgotten the charm of anupraas- alankars were taken for a ride by Hindi stalwarts like Gaurav Solanki and Vyasji in their sessions.

Looking at a global scale, it was a multilingual & a multicultural fiesta. Never in one’s life could one imagine a 1-1 session with an undercover writer. Sounds fascinating right! It indeed is. Suki Kim is the only person to have ever lived in North Korea as an undercover agent for immersive journalism. She is a proud author of bestsellers like – The Interpreter and Without You There’s No Us. I mean, the kind of exposure this festival gives to readers and writers, you can’t even gauge the altitude of it.

People from all corners of the world had flocked in plenty for the Jaipur Literature Festival, which happened at the Diggi Palace/ Clark’s Amer from Jan 25-29. Young, adults, oldies; everyone had a special author to look forward to.

Rupi Kaur, the New York best seller and the prodigy of slam poetry mesmerized the adolescent teens (females primarily) with her book launch – The Sun and Her Flowers. Rupi, who attended JLF two years back from the audience, surely has moved a long way in to her life. Her anecdotes from Milk and Honey left a lot teary-eyed. On the other hand, adults who are into political awareness or kids frenzied with Tharoorian swag were left awestruck by Shashi’s book launch and session for Why I’m a Hindu. Tharoor, known for his immaculate oratorship, kept the claps flowing throughout as he spoke in Hindi for an hour. It was a treat to have witnessed him live.

Foodies from the sub-continent had some equally good moments from the sessions on their literary platter. Chand Sur, the author of #LucknowCookBook, a speaker who’s 92, took the crowd with a storm with her thoughts on food; transcending time and borders. According to Sur, food brings people together, irrespective of the borders and landscapes. Irish stew in Lucknow still feels the same to her as it was in Lahore. Balochi Machli and Bhuna Gosht are a few more entrants to her memoirs of partition.


Taking the partition saga ahead, Aanchal Malhotra took the center-stage. Aanchal, the proud heiress of Delhi’s best Bookstore (Bahrisons) and the author of Remnants of a Separation: A History of the Partition through Material Memory spoke of her tales of interviewing people in Punjab, Kolkata, and Lahore and explained how food still connects so many people. Food constitutes a significant part of one’s memory as you tend to grow older, it becomes even more prominent. She also emphasized a lot on the fact that, no matter how many Kindles may come and go, physical books and Bookstores are here to stay and they’ll continue to thrive. I wish kindle had a way to preserve second hand notes and the fragrance of the gifted roses tucked in them for years.

In between the sessions you could grab a beer, chill a bit, go to the bookstore or see the fashionista brigade who were just there to grab the eye balls and had no connection with literature. Literature ka “L” bhi nahi aata hoga unhe. But, that I guess is the law of nature.

For every 5 dorks, 1 pretty instagrammer maintains the equilibrium of the universe.

The part which fascinated me the most was talking to the man behind JLF; Sanjoy K Roy, MD of Team Thought works. Roy tells how madly this fest has institutionalized the literary allure in the State. How, delegates, authors, journalists, PR guys and literature enthusiasts fly down from all across the globe and do their bit to increase the touristy quotient of the state. It has commercialized a bit, but that’s the need of hour in the emerging economy.

We – Bagga,Divij and I worked like crazy to take the best of the bytes, candid shots and kept the engagement quotient of Rajasthan Tourism’s handles up and kicking. Imagine working with a team, who had no interest in literature and eventually one fell for Rupi and the other on glamour, it captured outside the Penguin stall. One person I missed the most is Tarini. Had she been there, it’d be legendary. The bubbly, ever smiling, Arundhati fan is the most slaying (literally bole to katal) copywriter I’ve ever come across.

Not to forget, the Lal Maas on all the days for dinner and the charming buffet spread added up to divine luncheon scenes.

Keeping aside all the glittering aspects, there were moments, outside of the JLF arena; which I’m going to cherish for a lifetime – Staying in a dorm. Met Ram, a pediatrician from Chennai; Shantanu, a runaway kid; Bhaumik, Saanya,Vishakha – the Gujju gang. The best part about Gujjus attending JLF is that they idolize it a lot. After Navratri, this is their official/annual getaway ritual from home and is no less than a Tomorrowland. I got to know about other authors whom I had never heard about. Chitra Banerjee, Alice Walker, Mahasweta Devi, Alice Munro, Mohsin Hamid, Amy Tan, Kazuo Ishiguro and Neil Gaiman; who has already set the internet on fire post his confirmation for 2019.

Dil Khush Ho Gaya. Never had work sounded this interesting, thanks to AGL.
I’m not sure when do I get to attend this festival as a special delegate. So, I enjoyed like there wasn’t any coming back. I shall try to imitate Rupi though. Need to start working aggressively on my book – prose on Cricket.

To sum it up, the Lit fest was lit af. Long live literature !

Zen and the Art of becoming a Complete Bowler: Bhuvneshwar Kumar

Kumar may not be the most unusual name in the Indian folklore but the UP pacers know it well how to stand out, especially when it comes to swing bowling. Praveen, the impelling right arm bowler from Meerut had earlier demonstrated the world that Indians could also talk the ball, both ways. Before he left into oblivion, his prodigy; Bhuvi was all set to take the world with the storm. Lean, simple, the goodie-good chocolate boy looks had a demon inside, alas! He was more deceptive and lethal as compared to his master.


Bhuvneshwar entered the batsman dominated world of Indian Cricket and stung in his first over in every format, he ventured into.  He couldn’t have asked for a better debut. The lad was all across the media – print, digital, radio; you name it. The entire nation was frenzied by his bowling skills. Literally, one needs balls of steel to be the talk of the town and provide a ray of hope to 2 billion souls, who’ve been in pursuit of finding a name, they could chant; who could make the batsmen’s timbers grovel.

One simply doesn’t dismiss the God of Indian cricket on a golden duck unless his name is Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

I think all this was enough for him to stamp authority.

Within no time he was spearheading the Indian attack. He did justice to his stature on greener tracks and chipped in with valuable contributions with the bat. He was great to open, the captains also showed faith but lack of pace & stamina made him leak runs at the death. He struggled to put the balls in the block hole and ended up serving juicy half-vollies. Eventually, if you could negate him at the start, he became too predictable later on. Weak shoulders didn’t allow him either to hit the deck and shock the batsmen with an odd bouncer. Within no time, he joined the league of Mohit Sharmas and other nobodies of Indian medium pace Dept.

Fame and the dream to continue playing for India looked like a mirage as he was shuffled in and out of the squad. Then he started working on his pace, rather than improvising his strengths. He was left into no man’s land just like Irfan Pathan. His mojo was gone. The pace was a notch higher but ineffective. Gloom was the exact word written on his fate.

But God has its own way of putting things into perspective when you refuse to bow down. Luckily Sunrisers Hyderabad happened. He became the cog of the unit; regained his lost confidence. Started bowling at the death along with Mustafizur and did wonders for the team and helped the team win the title as well. This paved his way to the Indian team. Bumrah pairs him in the limited overs and Shami with the red cherry.

His innate ability to swing the bowl into the right handers outside the sub-continent makes him the mvp of this young gen team India. He has become a thinking bowler and contrary to bowling as per the batsman’s reputation, he bowls on his strengths and backs himself. With the Nagarkotis and breed steaming at 145 KMPH+, it’ll be challenging for the mainline bowlers to keep upto their best.

Bhuvi has shattered all the stereotypes of a traditional pacer. He doesn’t need a beefy physique, tattooed arms and rash voice to outfox the batters. The transformation from a lethal opening bowler to becoming a complete package (opening, shielding the team at the death with his miser economy rate) has been phenomenal. At times, Bhuvi outnumbers the death specialist, Bumrah too. His yorkers and boundary clogging deliveries at the death speak volumes of his temperament and the zeal to thrive.

I’m sure, Bhuvi will be the guiding force and play a pivotal role in India’s performance in 2018, the year where majority of India’s games are scheduled overseas. He’s expected to be back in the third test against the Proteas where Kohli and team will fight for pride. Since, he no longer depends on any turf, his ability to play and deliver in all conditions makes it a no brainer for any captain to play him in every game, every format.

Why need feminism when you have badassery in your blood !

I just finished reading Atlas Shrugged, the iconic master-piece by Ayn Rand; and must admit that it is one of the finest book I’ve read in a long time.It includes the elements of science fiction,mystery,romance and most importantly it contains Rand’s greatest work on Objectivism. In Greek mythology, Atlas was a Titan. The Titans waged war against the Olympians(Zeus & his supporters) and lost. As punishment, Zeus made Atlas forever hold up the heavens on his shoulders. You must’ve observed Atlas holding up the globe;which brings the poetic justice to the phrase “the weight of the world on your shoulders.” And, shrug means to surrender.

In the book, Atlas serves as a metaphor for all the smart, creative “doers” in the world:
the industrialists, the artists, the engineers, the professors, etc. According to her,just
like Atlas, these are the people responsible for supporting the entire world. In Rand’s
opinion, they are all mistreated and are opposed by bad government policies. So they all go on strike and basically “shrug” off the weight of the world.

Dagny Taggart, the protagonist of the novel; who also happens to run the largest network of trans-continental trains is an epitome of unapologetic bravery and independence. She is a kick-ass role model for women in business. She knows what she wants, how she wants it, and most importantly, what she’s willing to get the improbable.Her fearless approach in life makes me wonder do we really need the so called “Feminism”to succeed in life. When you have the capability to do things, rather than screaming your lungs out in lieu of pseudo attention, why not have great accomplishments ?

Another factor which attributed me to write this Blog was this new hoopla of females being granted offs for periods. Do you really thing it empowers women ? You don’t achieve equality by demanding special privileges.On one hand, we talk about women power and debate about women getting an active place in combats, and now we are advocating leave for periods. It’s like going back in time and making things worse. I know the biological clock offers a great deal of pain but don’t you think it’s unfair for the men at work. Another man in the same office puts extra 20 hours for the same money. People will tend to hire more men then.Also,any woman can fake it and take an off. It puts their integrity into jeopardy. I think it’s a bad move.

In a parallel world, we have Harmanpreet Kaur and Dagny Taggart slaying it with their
game. Dagny and Harman, both represent the new age modern women, leading from the front. They don’t believe in making excuses or playing the pity-card. They believe in getting the shit done. Harmanpreet Kaur, the Arjuna award winner and the dashing batter from Moga is a path breaker for her contemporaries and Indian women’s Cricket.

She is the first Indian cricketer (male or female) to have signed a Big Bash League contract. She recently came to limelight when she scripted India’s finest victory by slamming 171* (off just 115 balls) against Australia in WC semi final by becoming the 5th Highest run-Scorer in ODIs. Not just this,she also became the highest run scorer (male/female) in knockouts of an ICC event, surpassing Ganguly.

The way she raced to 150 from 101 in mere 17 balls, is something quite astonishing. Currently, she is the second-highest run-getter for India,after Deepti Sharma. It was out of the world power-hitting by the girl from Moga district in Punjab,something that has made her a stand-out player for India.These girls might have lost the final but the way they fought and exhibited magnificent display of character, I am sure it must’ve inspired a whole new breed of females to have picked up a bat and dream something new.

In a male dominated frenzied sport, where people used to be unaware of any match being played by the girls, people in India watched the game, supported them with their hearts and souls and even expressed their fury when they lost. I think Harmanpreet and co have done their job. The spark has been ignited.

Here is a list of striking similarities between Dagny Taggart & Harmanpreet Kaur and a tight slap on the face of all these feminazis –

1.Powerhouse of style and substance.
Just like Dagny’s speeches and unparalleled gala room looks, Kaur too thrives on her
straight-bat drives; empowered with authority and class written all over them.

“The straight line is the badge of man, the straight line of a geometrical abstraction that makes roads, rails and bridges, the straight line that cuts the curving aimlessness of nature by a purposeful motion from a start to an end”

2. Talk less, work more.
Harman was questioned by the media and even tested for dope when she hit a 88 m six in her early days. She preferred to ignore the haters/critics and let her bat do the talking. I think where she stands now, speaks volumes about her mental toughness & character. It’s useless to argue, with people who would neither refute an argument nor accept it.As Dagny professes it right from her childhood days, this is their mantra –

“I’ve always been unpopular in school and it didn’t bother me, but now I’ve discovered the reason. It’s an impossible kind of reason. They dislike me, not because I do things badly, but because I do them well. They dislike me because I’ve always had the best grades in class. I don’t even have to study. i always get A’s.Do you suppose I should try to get D’s for a change and become the most popular girl in school?”

3. Drape a cape, the situation needs
In case you seen Kaur’s game, she adjusts herself to the needs of the team. She started slowly in the semis,when India were 2 down at the start. Later,once the foundations were laid with Mithali, she pressed the accelerator button and went full berserk.And bowls too as in when required.Similar is the case with Dagny.

For Francisco, she’s the symbol of his quest to reshape the world. For Hank, she’s the wife he always wanted, as well as an inspirational teacher. For Eddie, she’s a heroic, larger-than-life figure. For John Galt, she’s the symbol of his ideals and his soulmate. Wear the cape, the situation needs. Moreover, right from sharing legendary strategies in the board roam to laying down the rails of the John Galt line to recruiting the man with the golden motor, she has performed every role her company demanded her to.

4. Defying stereotypes of the man’s world.
In terms of stats, Harman is rated above Ganguly in the knockout games and can dispatch the ball out of the park greater than maybe Kohli’s strength. It’s a brave new world, where anyone capable of doing anything significant technically and rationally,can do wonders;irrespective of the gender. Dagny too, showed immense maturity in handling topics like civil engineering, tensile strengths of materials, aerodynamics; did a better job than her brother James or any other man alive. And yeah these fields are considered to be the man’s domain.

5. Epitome of self assuredness.
Quoting Dagny Taggart once again, “You don’t have to see through the eyes of others, hold onto yours, stand on your own judgment, you know that what is, is–say it aloud, like the holiest of prayers, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.” She didn’t leave Hank Rearden’s side, rather stood by her no matter what the circumstances were -be it for Rearden steel or being labelled as her mistress. she didn’t let go of her dream to build the Galt’s line, even though it was opposed by zillion bureaucrats. She did what she thought was right, without seeking any validation from any other person. Also, had Harman thought of her neighbors and relatives while choosing this as her career, I don’t think she would’ve reached these heights of glory.

Never saw these two women whining about anything.I think they are a perfect eye-opener for everyone in the society. You don’t have to forcefully hog the limelight to be famous. Love what you do with pride,dignity, dominance and fun; the world is yours. Play with your boldness, not the victim card. Be a bad-ass, not a feminist.

Sources – ESPNCricinfo, GoodReads, Aynrand.org

Think small – Little things should matter more.

You may be the CEO of a multinational corporation, Captain of the Indian Cricket Team, owner of a Tapri or a bank manager,irrespective of the title or profile; I think everyone has got a certain set of beliefs/principles which keeps them going in life. Some are driven by monetary gain, a few are pumped by intellect. For me, it’s the small little things that matter the most and inspire me to achieve something meaningful.

I’ve never been driven by technology or fascinated with cars, luxury Hotels and penthouses. Words have always been a greater force than numbers for me; and it will continue to be. I can’t recollect an instance where people have remembered a stat for decades; whereas words have been. Most of us assume that data is money; which is partly true. But I’d say an idea or the raw emotion/thought expressed from the gut is the real gold. Technologies will come and go. Your creative instincts sustain.

I don’t want to be friends with rich brats or political forces to succeed in life. And yes I hate people without substance; especially at work. Fakles (Fake people) are the biggest turn off. People not being passionate about their work,yet faking it to climb the corporate ladder, without having an iota of motivation, shallow yet keeping a chin full of farzi pride for no rhyme are the ones that disappoint me the most. Trust me, I have seen a lot of those.

Ab to ek Jhalak mein pehchaan ke dooriyaan barkarar ho jati hai automatically. The problem with them is they think too big and end up achieving nothing except false identity/ ego and some money maybe. Enough of gyaanbazzi. I think I do possess some zeal in my eyes. Jazba hai dost, shayad dikhega nahi. Thanks to my oriental features !

Certificates/ degrees are not too significant to me. Pat on the back from someone special means the world to me. I HATE collecting trophies or books for that matter. I don’t want to build a library and display my knowledge to pump my ego. Rather, I’d share them with people spreading more knowledge. That’s wisdom.

Things like being close to just 2-3 people who could do anything for you, having people in your life who could read you any point of time, people with whom you need not think twice before cracking the lamest of the jokes, people whom you don’t address with their first/last name, people whose names are saved weirdly in your contacts; are the one’s that matter the most. Trust me, if you have them; half your life is sorted. It’s a luxury.

Ah! The smell of a new book, a thoughtful non-materialistic gift (gifted randomly), Biryani being served, watching Cricket endlessly, seeing your parents proud and the love in your begum’s eyes -I don’t think there can be greater driving forces in anyone’s life. Little things like these set the tonality of your bigger goals.

Start finding solace in them, you can do well. I am no preacher.Everyone has to figure out their own funda. But when I retrospect the downs and ups in my life so far, I feel this should be the way. It has worked for me.

-> It’s never about going to 7 stars for brunches. Sandwich and parantha dates at Metros have been the best one’s till date.

->It’s never about clubbing. It’s always about the best of the cafes and bookstores.


->It’s never about Football (except Arsenal)/ Basketball and keeping it up with peers. It’s always about Cricket. I love it like crazy.

->It’s never about holidaying in Swiss. It’s always been about dreaming to go to Lord’s and witness Kohli play. (Mera bas chale to Honeymoon bhi Bhutan mein manau. But for that to happen, I should be alive. I am darn sure that Begum would kill me if I don’t take her to some place exotic. Bhutan is fine for trekking later but not for honeymoon – as per her.)

->It’s never about too much money. It’s all about vivid encounters with crazy people.

->It’s never about those high rise views. It’s all about petting a pup ( Long distant dream. Mommy can only keep him or me) and a peaceful potty on your warm commode in the place you called Home.

Most importantly, it is about making a difference to yourself; not others. If you are not outgrowing yourself, you aren’t moving the motor of your own leanings.

One such instance happened recently, when my rant against Cricinfo’s new website layout was acknowledged and I hope some changes are acted upon it.The whole point I cried and made a hoo-halla was because of the fact that it mattered something to me. I have grown up idolizing that website and trust me it’s the first thing in the morning I look up to. I could have moved onto Cricbuzz easily. A hit less on their website shouldn’t have mattered it to them.I raised my voice because I saw a part of my childhood being taken away from me. I had a lot of memories and emotions attached to it and I just couldn’t let it die in front of my eyes. You can call me a selfish asshole but I’d say I’m an objectivist. So, should everyone be,ideally !

Postcards sharing has become a long lost form of expression. Things like these touch my soul the most. If you mean something to me, I shall find a way to send one of those to you somehow. So, I am traveling to Rajasthan these days. The place is something. Please expect a lot of that with my updates (apart from Facebook, which is like a public notepad where I type anything without even think twice). But this postcard would be a little personal. Lesser text, more feelings. As much as I love it, I hate communicating through Whatsapp. It kills the charm of everything. Can’t abandon it due to Begum and work, too bad !

And yes, how can I forget the most touching and soul-stirring aspect – FOOD. People who share their food with me are always placed in my top-notch bracket! Honestly.

I love people who write these days.In fact, I keep talking to a lot of colleagues too, people who possess creative writing abilities but have stopped writing, have stopped expressing due to their hectic schedules. I constantly keep reminding them to take out time and let the words do the talking to their souls. Forget about the readership. You have one constant fan, who’ll appreciate their art. Time nikal jaata hai. Nikaalo. As I draft this down, I think I am doing justice to whatever I have said earlier.

Words are mightier than swords. Numbers fluctuate, words resonate !

I know it’s tough to hold the retention spans, but I if you reached this far, please do me a couple of favours –

1. Please stop faking with me.If you don’t like anything, talk to me directly. Ek dost kam chalega. Farzi chutyap nahi chahiye.
2. Start writing more. Let your thoughts transpire a new revolution. No idea/thought is good/ugly. Just write.(I am still optimistic about the day when my PJ takes the shape of a campaign)

Every little helps. Every small goals achieved like these stir your soul and help you see the bigger picture clearly.

Love & Light