19 June 2009

Fan Fury...

Two things I would like to state before you read what I have to say. I am not a fan of cricket. And as a result, apart from Sachin Tendulkar, I dont hold any cricketer in high regard. That said, hear this example I have.

Imagine there's a family gathering, where a singing competition is held. One singer from each family should compete in the competition. Prizes are given to the winners. Now, a boy from your family goes on stage, and sets the crowd on fire with his singing. His parents and relatives are all swelling with pride at his vocal range. They absolutely adore his singing. This chap sings four songs back to back, in perfect pitch. The frenzy in the hall is unbelievable.

Then when he starts the fifth song, he goes off key. In teenage slang, he sucks. Big time. That's when you see the family members rear their ugly sides. They hate the kid now. They shout and curse at him. Once he makes his way back to his seat, they whack him left and right. His mother vows not to give him dinner. His dad swears they'll never go to see a movie for the next two months. After the competition is over, they seeth with anger at the way their kid sang. They tell everyone around what a disgrace he is.

How would you feel about that? Not if you were the kid. Just if you were watching the whole incident? I would feel disgusted. Wouldnt you?

I hope a name comes to your mind now. Dhoni. Not just Mahendra Singh Dhoni. But the entire Men in Blue. The eleven best cricketers in a country of a billion. Doesnt the way they're being treated bother us, even a bit?

Again, I know as much about cricket as you know about astrophysics. But I do know one basic human quality. That of supporting the people you love.

It's funny, isnt it? Two years ago, they were mad about Dhoni. Half of us wanted to marry him. The other half wanted to copy his hairstyle. We praised his skill, his intelligence, his grit. There was nothing we didnt praise about him. Then something happened. He made a few errors. He didnt play properly. So how do we reply? By burning his effigy.

They say getting into the Indian Cricket team is itself an achievement. So what about being the captain of that team? We are people who get carried away by the praises of our teachers or compliments of our friends. Should I really believe that a man wont get carried away when he's the hero of an entire nation? Meaning its entirely human for Dhoni to bask in the limelight. You'd do the same thing if you were in his place I guess.

But what's the problem with us? Why do we idolize our cricketers, instead of loving and respecting them? They gave us so many reasons to have pride in being Indian.They were probably the reason you and I spent weeks bragging about India's cricketing might. The reason you and I went to sleep with a smile, even when there were a hundred other things in life to bother us. They brought us joy, a feeling of unity, and team spirit.

No one can win every match. But if we try, we can show some love and care. It's almost utopian isnt it: imagine a scene where the Indian team lands in Mumbai, and reach their hotel room, to find hundreds of cards with the wordings: It's okay. We'll win it the next time. Love, your fans...

No, that would be foolish to do, woudlnt it. Instead, we'll do what's best: Burn their effigies, and attack their homes.

Perhaps it shows how much we've progressed. In a country that's supposed to be marching towards progress at a furious pace, police men have to run to a cricketer's house, so that his family can be saved from the once loving fans. It's a pitiful condition.

Grow up. That's all we can do. That, or ask for Dhoni to get off. So that we can copy the next captain's hairstyle. Until he too screws up. In which case, we'll just burn his house...and ask for the next guy to come along....

[This is my first post on an ongoing topic. Hope it's not out of line. I strongly believe in what I've said here. Pass on this to your friends; and you're more than free to discuss whether I'm right or wrong. Would love to hear your opinion. But please dont leave Anonymous comments. Instead, use the OpenID option, and use a nickname if you have to.]

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  2. dude cricket aint abt feeongs..its abt the game..if sum1 dsntlay well he has to be changd..cricketers aint god...the things is we make them feel lyk gods..sumtyms they play well,ww shud ncourage them..bt when dey dnt we cant..they r running arnd wit our national pride..thist 20 loss was due to dhoni's over xonfidence..bad decsions n a lil of himself..in t20 he was playing test cricket..if he aint gud he shud have gave sum1 else the chance...it was all with his decision of putting raina n jadeja,hu didnt d nething gud in the tiourn...n we had dinesh karthik sitting there in the pavillion..cricket is all abt ur game...if u dnt play gud we gt so many more to replace u..u cum bak whwn u r bak wit ur game....n think if indian army did the same wud u still tell next tym?once pride is gone..its very hard to bring bak..

  3. true...but unfortunately dis is wat happens in india...coz such is the passion for the game...rather the players of cricket do get some reapect...what about the hockey team? boxing team? and so on...each team must be given importance..Yes, the Indian population goes wild if the team loses or wins..but its somrthing no one can help...

    P.S: I never thought of marrying Dhoni my entire life. I disliked him from the day he entered to today.Not because of the errors he made( as if I keep track of it)..

  4. This is the sort of stuff I would LIVE to read man. There is nothing more irritating than the Indian fans doing all this bullshit.
    Take a look at Australia: got out in the group stages; went back home withuot a fuss, and started training again. Alright maybe they got a few articles written on their lacklustre perfomance but that's about it.
    And then compare it to India. Stuff burnt, the captain booed by the own country, HUGE media coverage, and there were even shows where people called in and gave their "expert" views. Disgusting.
    P.S.: I'm not an MS Dhoni fan.

  5. It is a very pitiable condition because this happens only in India! When they do good...praise them to such an extent that they cant praise them more and when they do bad...go to literally ANY extent and not only bring harm to the cricketers but also to their families...now what harm did the family do?!
    And yes neither am I a Dhoni fan!

  6. my sentimnets exactly!sure his actions meritted criticism,but give him a break!it only human to err!if he continues to take such poor decisions,then bring on he ammo..

  7. Mustafa great stuff....

    P.S - I am the biggest indian team and dhoni fan you can come across...

    Firstly...Indians all around the globe have the same feelings and emotions....We show the same disappointment when India fails to acheive something and the same pride and joy when India emerges victorius. The only differnce is the way each indian expresses his/her feeling.

    I may be the BIGGEST INDIAN TEAM FAN ever but do you see me burning posters of cricketers on the road when india loses or having late night parties when india wins.
    But yes the magnitude of joy in each indians heart is the same.

    When Indian fans boo the captain, or burn his house....does that mean they hate him....it means they have great expectations from them...They only thing wrong is they seek theor expectations in a wrong way....Reason? Cricket in India is A RELIGION....lives of some people begin with cricekt and end wht cricket...they treat cricekters as god ...
    Can god possibly do anything wrong?(thats exaclty their feelign)

    Have the passion for cricekt...live cricket eat cricekt walk cricekt.....BUT YES DONT GET FICKLE MINDED ON TERMS WITH CRICKET...

  8. @Anonymous : Thanks...though (sigh) your still anonymous...

    @Rocky : Hmmm....though I dont fully agree with what you say, it is true that most of us think that way...which is sad, actually...

    @A New Beginning: Thanks!

    @Megh: Yup...much has been said about our ignorance of the other sports...maybe if we spent more time supporting other sports...we wud'nt freak out about losing in a tournament so much...

    @Rejin: Lol...I should write more stuff that you LIVE to read...and yes, I did want to tell about Australia...those guys would put us to shame...anyone heard of Ricky Pointing's house being burnt? Nope...

    @Swati: Yah, it's like they say...Love them...or HATE them....its a stupid policy! Gud point, what did their family do wrong!

    @Namiya: I agree...

    @Ganank: Excellent comment. It's tough to argue against what you've said...but yes, in the end, let's not get fickle minded..

    @Megh, Rejin, Swati: Since we're making it clear here...even I'm not a M.S. Dhoni fan...!

  9. Nice read....How did ya get hold of my blog?

  10. It was time someone brought out this sad reality. Good Job, Muthu. Indeed an Eye Opener for everyone!

  11. Bravo Mustafa! This is a wonderful message. It's not fair on our part.

    Though I wouldn't not truly agree with Ganank's justification.

  12. People have poured in soo much details about ur post already that i feel like a celebrity judge in idea star singer who have nuthin to comment about.. all i can say is:
    nice work bro..:P