December 21, 2006

Mapping the fan's mind

Appeared in The Hindustan Times on December 26, 2006

The times are a deranging. First, India’s blacked out four-nil in the one-dayers. It’s declared that new blood is bad blood; blue blood is reinstated. India does bloody well and wins their first ever test in South Africa. About time too - there’s a limit to dissecting insects called defeats. In such foreign times, all’s forgotten and anything goes. Idle cricket banter begets more idle-cricket-banter.

So why not introspect and know what type of cricket fan you are - even if you’re not. Because, ‘there’s no way out of here, when you come in, you come for good’ – that’s by somebody who also sang ‘Money’ - which makes for riveting cricket chat. But that’s an altogether different beast, and doesn’t go with the good cheer of Christmas and the euphoria of an overseas test win. So, without further ado, let’s delve into ourselves. And see, how deep is our love?

Antarctic Cricket Fan (ACF): She’s so cold…ice cream cold to cricket. She usually comes in the shape of a woman (wife, girl friend, socialite). In her life, she’s seen one game – that too the final balcony scene after India won the Prudential Cup final. Has very un-cricket memories of that evening – drunk daddy with dodos. Mention the C word, and she shudders like a junkie/looks through you like Superman/vanishes like MP after elections.
Avoid ACFs at all costs.

Swiss Cricket Fan (SCF): Neutral and into banking. Expect a well-balanced bro-in-law type. Talk cricket, and they nod politely/change subject politely/‘excuse-me-please’ politely. Live cricket scores below the Sensex listings on CNBC are a minor-irritant.
Confront SCF’s nod only when a blank wall is your only other companion.

Italian Cricket Fan (IF): Gives the impression: likes to eat C, drink C, sleep C, and even sleep with C. Think Shantaram. With soccer season, is all for Arsenal. Also follows tennis. Favourite players: Anna Kournikova and Sania Mirza.
Engage ICF only when you are so-many-pints-down that you can’t see-thru his phoniness.

French Cricket Fan (FCF): Livid at best of times, and downright rude when India loses. Speaking to FCF, you feel accountable for those 8 ODI lashings (in South Africa and West Indies). Also, they slam Sachin’s stint at Lashings ‘scoring against kids, what next?!’
Converse with FCF only if you are in a furious FCF frame-of mind, troubled by the Ad mullah cricketer’s make but you cannot.

German Cricket Fan (GCF): Is an active behind-the-scenes campaigner for making umpires redundant. Behind techi-innovations like hawk-eye and stump-cam.
Best to meet GCF over the phone.

Bollywood Cricket Fan (BF): Earliest experience of cricket was in the Bodyline series on DD, followed by Lagaan and Iqbal, many full moons later.
According to BCF, Bradman’s a great actor and Iqbal should be selected instead of Pathan.

Yankee Cricket Fan (YCF): For him, every country – and every team is his. During the ’05 Ashes, he became an MBE; but when Oz wins in ‘06, he’s with the Invincibles; Balmy army to Bharat army to Armageddon – he’s always there to oil his pockets.
Beware: there’s an YCF in all of us. That’s what they mean by Americanization of the world, dude.

Israeli Cricket Fan (ICF): He could belong to any age group, but wears the scars of partition as if he left Lahore, you know when. His basic concern is India v/s Pak games – after India beat Pak on March 1st, 2003 (a day he’ll never forget), he stopped watching the World Cup. Chances are, he flew in from Chicago to South Africa just for that game. Mention India in the hopeless Cape (ODIs), and he’ll bark, ‘Sowhat? India beat Pakistan in South Africa.’
With ICF, you ride the emotional roller coaster thru Indo-Pak encounters. Much more fun if you enjoy ‘Omkara’ style bad language.

Bharat Cricket Fan (BCF): Thinks himself to be the greatest cricket fan ever. And you know what, he probably is.
Any non-C conversation with BCF is bound to be nonsense.

1 comment:

Qasim Ali said...

Thanks for sharing this post regarding mapping the fan's ming
Keep sharing
news or cricket