Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Spot Next to Me

Aerobics… a girl thing! Oh really?

In my gym… rather in the gym I go to, a small section had been reserved for ladies and their aerobic exercises. I know I am calling it a section, but it was hardly one. It was just an area in the middle of the gym, uninhabited by machines and all.

There were about 6-7 women, ladies, girls, whatever you call them… and a guy… who did aerobics there. Actually, let’s just call them girls because the guy used to be me. ‘Me and girls’ sounds cooler.

Okay, so, coming back to myself… while some men were seen pumping their bodies with weights and overweights… pushing ups and pushing downs… and while others were on treadmill and cross trainers… I’d be seen doing my jigs with the girls on aerobics.

While they flexed their biceps and other muscles I didn’t know existed, I’d be dancing around doing salsa-like moves partnering my obesity.

Needless to say, Indian men that they were, most of them looked at me in ‘what’s-wrong-with-this-fatso’ kinds of stares. They looked at me between their reps… between their rests… between their walks… and even runs. And at other times as well.

And on some days, people even misconstrued me for the aerobic ball.

Or maybe they didn’t…? And I was just thinking too much? Well, for the moment, let’s just take my side and assume that they did. Whatever! As if it reroutes the story I’m telling you.

At this end, I just tried to make it look like it was completely normal—for a fat guy to jump around like that… matching steps with beats of dhikchoo dhikchoo numbers.

And to be honest, I believed it was. I still do.

Okay, now, why am I telling you about this aerobic stuff?

Actually, my intention is not to tell you about what went on outside the aerobic group… but inside. I want to talk about something that happened between me and the girls. Do I hear you saying ‘wow’ already?

Okay, so, since the first class, my spot had been fixed. The trainer had told me where to stand ‘always’ for all classes. Probably, considering the risk this truck would pose, while moving around, to the cars nearby, he was just being prudent to keep it at the corner of the road. Most probably. Or maybe he just wanted me to have more space for my free manly movements. Needless to say, this spot of mine happened to be at the corner of our so-called aerobics section.

Sounds cool till now.

Now, I used to reach gym at 7 and do my warm-ups… while the girls came in around 7:20-25, just 5-10 minutes before the start of our class.

Which is where my problem started.

There was a strange thing happening every day. It had even started killing the curious cat in me. Consider my query now – ‘why the hell were the girls hell bent on getting the single possible spot next to me?’

No, seriously. Whoever entered first would just go and take that spot on a first-come-first-serve basis. Two of them even fought over it on a particular day. At this end, I used to have a new person next to me almost every other day.

Why god, why?

Not that it helped me with anything… our exercises did not involve physical contact with partners. But it made me curious. I even compared the whole thing with the solar system one day. The big sun being static and planets moving around it… but it didn’t actually compare. That’s because no one moving around me. I was just the Pluto right at the corner, not even proportionately sized to other planets, come to think of it.

So, I was curious. Were they interested in standing next to me? Oops, I have to control this sheepish smile I got at the moment.

Oh, mind you—I was not in talking terms with the girls… so there was no way of confirming what exactly it was about.

Anyways, I thought and thought and thought a lot… and came up with the following:

1.      I smelled good… this was very likely because Nike had obviously researched and invested a lot in making the deodorants I used.

2.      Two, probably, someone from the group liked me. Duh! I mean the male in me said that to me. They used to smile at me. If that justifies my thought process. Nevertheless, it was the typical male saying typical stuff, I know.

I discarded the first option and decided to play along with the second. After all, at least, I was male enough to think like males… compensating for the time I was not male enough to work out like males. And this male kept saying cute little things in my ears. I smiled.

And so, days passed… turned into a couple of weeks. And we continued exercising with the same old routine—me and the girls, me static and them ‘desperate’ to take the spot next to me.

I had even started wondering who were the girls that liked me… rather who I wanted them to be… Wow, look at me, talking only in plurals for the moment.

I knew this trivia could not go on for long. And I had to do something. How could it continue to happen the way it did? A girl rushing for that spot... upsetting those who couldn’t.

So… one day, I finally decided to ask! Who knows I might have been governed by the possibility of finding leads on the girls who liked me.

It took some courage, but I did ask one of them.

And all that the girl I asked… said… ‘coz of the fan’. I hadn’t noticed that the spot next to me was directly under the fan.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Dear Indian Cricket Team

I know that you have caused terrible pain in chests of people like myself--over the last two months. You have lost, lost, and lost. Probably, tosses are all you may have won.

And your so-called fan base might have resorted to depletion... I don't know. But I know. They'll come back. Indians forget easily and way too quickly.

The 4-0 drubbing in tests against England was as unbelievable as... probably... England beating someone 4-0 in tests.

Day on day, we sunk into what would be a tar-filled drum with no bottom. And match after match, we watched you guys with rekindled hopes. But then you lost again, and we slept again.

We lost the rank 1 in tests... lost our 'test champions' status... lost our goddamn Indian izzat. Haha. But then came the t20 and ODI stage, and we woke up again.

The damn t20! Aaah. That would be a t20-volt jolt to our drenched hearts. Another loss. And we slept again.

Well, still, we woke up and geared up for the ODIs--wurrld champions we were, you see.

So, having spent 10 more days in agony, we now see you trailing 2-0 with 2 matches to go. Ahem! That obviously means you can't win the series. Ahem! And win the series bullshit; you don't seem to be winning a match for now.

Okay. So, why am I writing all this worldly news here?

Ah! Well, because I love you. And I want to tell you that I support you whole-heartedly. And, as I tell others, I support you unconditionally.

If 4 years ago I were told that my team would give me so much happiness over the course of next 4 years... all those world cup wins... test series wins... ODI wins... and blah blah wins... BUT only to be followed by a damn beating in England... a once-in-a-lifetime jhaapad.... err, I would have taken it!

And so I take it.

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