18 February 2009

Just A Bat And A Ball

My 11th Grade, Final exams are finally over. And since I'm assured of passing with decent marks, there was enough reason to smile. But something my friend said triggered this post.

As we were laughing in the bus, he remarked, "Dude, do you remember how it was for us at the beginning of 11th?"

I did remember. And it brought back a lot of memories...

At the beginning of my 11th, I had reached the end of my 6 year long life at my previous school. That meant I was leaving behind the best school, best group of friends, and above all, a sense of happiness and comfort. And what did I have to look forward to? Nothing. Nothing other than studiying.

People - including my parents, over zealous teachers and pessimistic classmates - kept reminding me about how much I had to study, how serious I had to be in life, and just how useless it would be to go in search of fun and happiness.

So what was I supposed to do? That's when I thought of the "Bat and Ball" story. It's completely fictional, though it can obviously happen for real. Read the story, and hopefully you'll understand what I mean...

An year ago, I had to go to my ancestral home in India, and stay there for an exceptionally long two months. I had nothing to do, except walk around the house and spy on my neighbours. That's when I saw something interesting in the house next door. An NRI family had arrived, among them a kid of about my age. He seemed really frustrated that the house had no television, computer, MP3 player - heck, it didnt even have regular electricity supply.

So I spent two weeks, watching the kid from my first floor bedroom window. He was lying in his room, having nothing to do at all. There were a few dusty books in the room. And two other things. A cricket bat, and a cricket ball.

The kid got so used to the idleness, that he didnt mind it after a while. Finally, he left with his parents, after wasting his two week vacation.

Next up, was another kid, probably a cousin of the first. He reacted in the same way when he came to know that there was no modern entertainment facility around. But this guy, being a bit more sportive, decided to toss the ball around, and hit it. That is, until he broke a vase. That stopped his cricketing exploits. He too was glad to leave three weeks later. Though his vacation was probably boring...

Finally, the third kid arrived. This guy seemed different from the rest. Sure, he did fuss about the same things as the other two, but there was a difference. On the second day of his visit, he picked up the cricket bat, tossed the ball in the air, and a smile formed on his face. He then did something that surprised even me.

He went to the neighbouring houses, and asked if there were any kids of his age, who were interested in playing. They were a bit surprised, and besides, they didnt have any stumps. Didnt matter for the kid. He asked them to meet him in the field behind his house.

Within an hour, about 16 guys, including me, were playing cricket. It was funny, because we used coconut barks for the stumps, and the players were either too small for the bat, or too big. But surprisingly, we played. Till Sunset. And what was more, we decided to play the next day as well. In fact we all played for the next two weeks. It was the best two weeks of my vacation.

I thought about this later. And here's what struck me.

The world around us, is filled with the three type of kids. There are some, who complain about how unlucky they are, and do nothing to change the situation. Then there are some, who try to make the best out of their situation, but loose hope after a while. Finally, there is the third kind. The people who set out to change their situation, so that they end up creating memories, fulfilling dreams...and in simple terms, stay happy.

My friend told me the following, just one week after entering 11th grade.

"Musthafa, life is so shit. I mean, we're in a school where we've got to study all the times. They dont have any extra curricular activities for us. We cant hang out anymore. Parents are so strict. The teachers are so harsh. No chance to have fun....life sucks!"

Sure, sometimes life does seem to be crap. Because, like the three boys in the story, we dont get a computer, television, or even an MP3 player. But you know what? Sometimes in life, all we need to have fun....is a bat and a ball.
Please do share your comments on this topic. I'm hoping we can have a discussion here...
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The next post will be on Saturday, 21st February.
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  1. this is undoubtedly and without ne 2nd thought the best thing you ever wrote.

    my fav lines...
    "Sure, sometimes life does seem to be crap. Because, like the three boys in the story, we dont get a computer, television, or even an MP3 player. But you know what? Sometimes in life, all we need to have fun....is a bat and a ball."

    its really true that most of the times all v do is crib but if v try nd not lose hope then v can change. and even if v r not successful v can still proudly say that v tried to change rather than complain.

    rise up yong men and women - rise

  2. good one bro...u've come back with a bang...

  3. true...very true....bt again easier said than done...(gues m lyk d 2nd type)!!!....newayz...good 1!

  4. Bravo Mustafa! Once again, your post is though provoking. We must all try to be like the third kid. I'm sure I will try.

    And about my opinion, here it is. We all need someone who is like the third kid in society. Someone who would go around calling all the other kids, who are of the first and second type, to come out and have fun. That is where we need someone like you.

    No flattery, but for some reason you have always seemed to be of that type to me. Even back at the picnic. It was you and Moiz who made the first step. The spark! And then the spark brought fire, the real fun. That is my opinion of this topic.

    Not everyone is like the third type. Most of us end up in either of the first two categories.

  5. hot da!.......really awwweessumm!....n i mean it!.......
    i juz wanna say 1 thin dude!.......UR THE PERFECT MATCH 4 THE 3RD GUY IN THE STORY! ;)
    cheers bro! ;)

  6. the best ive come accross in your blog till now i gues!!.....really good!......inspiring and optimistic!!

  7. WOW..
    now this is one HECK of an analogy...i guess i fall into the first category right now..
    hope not for long...
    anyways...good to see ur blog again man...

  8. heyy..muthu again u've inspired me..i wish ppl wer lyk u..i mean lyk the third guy...optimistic wen u hav to...

    life doesnt chnge its u who chnges it...so u gotta decide hw u gonna treat it...so heres an ausome example set frwrd by the best brother..lol....so guys and gals out there

    life really doesnt suck..it wnt suck if u dnt wnt it to....so always think positively...in simple wrds...CONCENTRATE ON THE SOLUION ND NOT THE PROBLEM...!!

    rock on bro!1...bravooo

  9. atlast..muthu is back!!

    I guess i belong to the second category

    Good one!!

  10. dude..its.. relly.. an eye opener..
    gotta tel u tht..

  11. hey dude...
    isnt there a fourth type of guy in this story..??
    who is so jobless that he spies on his neighbours..??:D:D
    nice work anyway...

  12. heyy muthu really a gud 1 ....
    dis is first blog I red of urs....so I am not comparing.byways keep up de hard work ....keep rocking

  13. one of the finest examples of critical thinking I've seen in my life!!! You write simply beautifully...it surprises me!! I'm glad i decided to look up ur blog after you left a comment on mine...you seem to have an amazing fan base..and why not?? You absolutely deserve it! You are extremely talented...privelaged to stop by here!! :-) Well, you wouldn't mind if I added ur name to my "talented young bloggers" column, do you?? I love seeing young people write...do keep going, and im sure ill keep coming back!!


  14. oh yes... mustafa is back with a bang.. :)

  15. dude dat was awesome ...........
    think im gettin 2 b a fan of urs
    hope every bcomes da 3rd kid .
    i think der should b all kinds of people but ...............................................da third kinds r blessed.

    dont worry im in ur class

  16. hey man !!..nice post..i like it !!..atleast gt to learn sumthin !!..keep da gud wrk !!

  17. hey there can be many more type yaar

    u can run away frm that place
    u can start playing on his mobile
    or put music and relax


  18. Good read

    To confess, I must say, I'm sort of the second kid. Try something...and then give up, and then blog about it!

  19. @All: Thanks guys...if anything...this is the most heartful post i've put up...really believed in what i said...and thnks for ur comments....sriously encouraging...hope to write more such posts soon!

  20. If teachers were harsh and all we had to do in life was to study; you have to complain before you can change the situation...

  21. this indeed triggered my interest and my attention span read through it all.
    surely life does seem all crappy and absurd a whole lot of times but yes the FUN :) you have summed it up very inspirational-ly!

    it is one of a kind piece!
    i am glad your exams are over.
    that is one phase i dont wanna go back to!

    so i see you as the kid with the spark :)
    shine on!

  22. @AD - Thanks for the read. Glad it held ur attention till the end. And I do appreciate you dropping a comment...hope you'll be back for more posts...

  23. UR Brilliant !!! Its just awesome reading ur posts...keep them coming

  24. Your Blog is like a good old short stories book!Keeps the readers searching for the next story..:)

    Oru Bhaaviyulla writer!All the best to you!

  25. Dude... you are too young to have such a clear thought flow. Are you sure you are a 16 year old kid? I am amazed at your total grasp of such intricate philoso[hies of life.

  26. This is the third one from Best of Laptop dairy. Its ,not too good as earlier two were, but nice. thanks for this post.