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Showing posts from March, 2007

Definitely Bigger than Bridget's Bump...

An Airbus A380, the world's largest passenger jet, passes a taxiing Qantas Airlines Boeing 747 after touching down at Los Angeles International Airport on the inaugural visit of the superjumbo jet to Los Angeles, Monday, March 19, 2007. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

And, Yeah, It Ends...

So India is out of the world cup. Rather than lamenting about shortcomings in the Indian team, I've been wondering about what brings out the best in the top teams out there (such as Sri Lanka and Australia). My conclusion: superior attitude. You know, the attitude that goes, "Fuck...them...all! We are going to destroy our opponents and move on without looking back!".

Honestly...Indian players, especially the ones from prominent backgrounds (half the team), might have a holier-than-thou attitude, which would make them subconciously underperform on the field. I have been a culprit of this attitude myself. I would tell myself that, owing to my rich Indian heritage, I had superior talent (great memory, great analytic skills, great social skills, etc.) than that Mexican guy or that Irish dude and so would end up putting in only 50% of effort into everything I did. One day I realized what was going on and gradually started making changes. Today I take very few things for grante…

Reading That Matters

One of my current passions is attempting to locate and buy the books that I had read in my childhood and teenage years in India (and, believe me, there were a lot of them). And one of the books at the top of my list definitely has to be Nikolai Nosov's wonderful The Adventures of Dunno and His Friends. I am pretty sure that the hardcopy of this book is lying around somewhere with my family's belongings back in India. Growing up, I wasn't really into movies or hanging out with friends all that much. About the only things that interested me were weight lifting and books. Today, When I want to relax, I most certainly will pick up one of these books rather than switching on the TV.

I still remember back in high school when I would rent a bicycle and take Nosov's book out with me to the countryside to read it all over again for the umpteenth time in the blazing heat. The books' authors may have drawn parallels to people or stories in real life. For me, even today, all of…

'Not Surrey'

An article in the BBC today quotes a British Colonel Ed Brown (that name sounds more American to me) based in Iraq as saying that, "Things are imperfect, but we make a huge mistake, and we will move down a road that will end in real failure, if we try and turn this into Surrey. It isn't."

No, damn it, its not Surrey! No one delivers milk in a bottle to one's door in Iraq. If anything were delivered, it will likely be the last delivery one will ever receive, if you catch my drift. There are no dance halls to take the ladies out on a beautiful autumn English evening (I wouldn't mind a few of those, by the way) although I am quite sure one likely does a fair bit of dancing when finding oneself in the midst of a firefight.

The Colonel further adds that, "There is a level of violence here, but that is life in Iraq. It's been like this for thousands of years. It's not going to change."

By Jove, they finally got it!

Installing Democracy in the middle east?…

And So It Continues?

"Excess on occasion is exhilarating. It prevents moderation from acquiring the deadening effect of a habit. -- W. Somerset Maugham"

India scored 413 runs, a World Cup record, against Bermuda with Sehwag's 87-ball 114, comprising of 3 sixes and 17 fours, and Yuvraj Singh's 46-ball 83 with 7 sixes being the highlights!

But India played against minnows Bermuda and not an Australia. Nevertheless, a win is a win. And since almost all those who batted on the Indian side should have felt good about their individual performances and the team's performance in general, I hope that it is with a feeling of elan (and not too much confidence) that India will go up against the much more experienced Sri Lankans in a few days time.

Anil Kumble proved his effectiveness and economy yesterday against Bermuda and I certainly hope that he will be retained for the match on Friday.

And So It Ends?

Well, Pakistan is out of the World Cup. They lost to the West Indies and...get this, Ireland!! It was a close victory...but still a huge victory for the Irish minnows! When I drove into Boston yesterday afternoon, there were a lot of Irish milling around Faneuil Hall and spilling out into the roads. I was like, "Ah, Cricket has made it to America!". Then I realized it was St.Patrick's Day. Oh, brother...

India lost their first match to...get this, Bangladesh!! It didn't take an expert commentator to see that the Bangladeshis were full of enthusiasm bringing to the table something that the Indian team did not seem to have: heart.

India's batting was "spineless" as an Indian daily, The Hindu, put it. Given that the pitches in the Caribbean usually favor bowling, India's Captain Rahul Dravid should have opted to field first in an effort to study the pitch. Up to that point, everyone else who won the toss opted to field. If Dravid wanted to try something…

And So It Begins...

Well, the first ODI match, between the West Indies and Pakistan, of the ICC's Cricket World Cup begins today in the Caribbean. The tournament has been reported to have cost around US$ 400 Million to stage. With 16 teams (the largest ever), it seems to have been modeled after the tournament format of FIFA Football.

Australia and South Africa, followed by India and Sri Lanka, are tipped to be strong contenders for the cup. There are a few new teams (including "what the fuck?!" The Netherlands) playing in the World Cup for the first time.

But it looks like that the defending champions, Australia, don't have any legit spinners and that is going to be tough for them in the Caribbean pitches (that usually James Bond likes to play in, if you get my drift). The Aussies recently had a series of five consecutive defeats in ODI. That might just have been a ruse on their part to deceive people into thinking that they are going into the World Cup without form.

Nevertheless, it is go…

Cruel Intentions

I was reading about the difference between Sunni muslims and Shia muslims on one of BBC's wonderful quick guides (I already knew the difference but I thought I might read about it anyway).

Now I have read that US and British forces are just as responsible for killing Iraqi civilians as much as the Sunni "death squads". But one thing that occurred to me was how influential the Saudis could be in diffusing a large portion of the violence in Iraq...if they wanted to. Having been long under the "mentorship" of the United States, I wouldn't be surprised if Saudi Arabia (where the majority of muslims are Sunni) decided to rebel by using the sectarian violence in Iraq as a future "negotiation" tool with the United States. The Saudis could just be seeing this as a way to "restart" Wahhabism. I mean, why not? Americans are starting to realize that fossil fuels will not be around forever and many Western companies are (avidly) researching alternati…