Archive for March, 2008

Hoosiers and a nice weekend

There is something about an underdog sports movie, any underdog movie. You know the plot. The team/ hero/ lead will win against all odds. That is a given. But still, you love it. Because, it is not the story, but the story-telling, it is not the victory, but the fight.

Hoosiers, is one of the best coming-from-back, underdog movie, I have seen. And it is all in the process of winning. It is about a small school, from a small town, winning the Indiana State Championship. It is about a forgotten coach redeeming himself. But, you do not cheer for the super speeches the coach gives, or bite your nails in the finals, when everything boils down to the final second. Everyone is a winner by then. The tension is in the smaller matches, when the town shows up to support a team, they no has no chance of winning. You know, because of the premise of the story that they will win, but still, you mutter a silent prayer for them, you jump with joy with every basket, you cringe when they go down, you cry with the team, and you are not watching a movie, but living it.

One scene really stood out, for it showed how the coach could inspire confidence. The town team had defied odds and reached the finals, which was to be played in Indianapolis. And, they were awed seeing the big stadium and the huge galleries. The coach, however, takes out a measuring tape, and makes them measure the dimensions of the court, and says, it’s the same as it is back in our gym. Amazing morale boosting scene.

It is spring break here now. And the weather is warming up, and so is the mood. The hopeless depression of the winter, is giving way for the warmth and wishful hoping of the spring. And it feels good.


So, on Saturday, A, J and I, were putting aratai (adda, bantering) in J’s home. It turned out to be one of the more memorable evenings here in Madison. It was like an evening I dreamed of spending for a long time. It started with an take away Thai food, a not so great movie (The Holiday), an hour or so of useless chatting about schools and mischiefs and other not-so-important, but funny stuff, that is stuffed in our heads for times like this. Later, late into the evening, we started playing Hangman, but only with Hollywood movies. Another remnant of school days, boring classes spent playing this game. Instead of drawing the hangman, each guess had to be got correct by the time you run out of words in -Hollywood, Hollywood, being to signify English movies. So, we laid out the rule that, we would only play with English movies, and A, the walking IMDB, was guessing movies off, even before J and I could think of it, and setting us, tough, obscure movies. Finally, J decided it is enough, and set us a movie, and insisted that she write ********* instead of Hollywood, just for a change. We went on with it, and found no English words at-all completing the blank words, and A, suddenly jumped up, and said it is Alai-paayuthey, the tamil movie. J, had set us up. And it made my evening. It was cute, sweet, innocent, wicked, mischievous and beautiful. And, a small, nice memory, for other such Saturday evenings of pure fun with meaningless anecdotes and time-pass games.


Have I changed in America?? I think so, for I visited a temple 250 kms away today, after refusing, all of the last two years in Mumbai, to go to temple 250 meters from my home. And this is the second time in America, I have been to one. But it was beautiful, and the drive was fun, and the whole day great. But, to put a different spin to it, the temple indeed helped me. The past week had been kind-of tough, and I was feeling a bit down, and the temple, somehow helped. I don’t know how, but thats why, I guess it is hard to explain God. Amen.


PS: Was supposed to have posted it last night, but surprisingly, there was a power cut and I could not post. But, then, the dark streets and the rain (ya! rain, and no snow) reminded me of Bombay. It was not the noise of a downpour or the silent drizzle, but somewhere in-between, a periodic patter-patter, like a lullaby, which, strangely reminded me of monsoon evenings, sitting in 524, at the Vashi toll-naka, looking at the rain fall into the sea, and waiting to get home to a hot cup of chai. Amen to that thought too 🙂