Friday, September 8, 2017

Grown up, dignity – down

I had just changed the school and it was my first day at my new school. As a new student, my uniform was not ready for the first day. Thus, I was in casual dress. In addition to that, I also did not possess the complete set of my textbooks. I had bought some books before the school hour and it turned out that rest of them would arrive only after a week. I was utterly disappointed. At the very first day, I had no uniform, only half text books with me and frightened to the bones as I marched towards the new school for the very first time with a long face, of course.

The first day was eventful as most of the teachers asked me about my uniform and books, as I introduced myself to them. Time ticked slow and in the third period, a giant (giant in a sense that she was tall and bulky and her high heels aided to that too) lady teacher entered the class-room. She introduced herself as an English teacher and after she shared some laughs, she started the very first lesson. It was a poem by Late Indian poet Harindranath Chattopadhyay ( sorry I forgot the name of the exact poem but remember his name because it seemed funny to me at that time). She made us write the poem in our exercise-book and so we did. As soon as we copied it, the period was over and before she left, she asked us to memorize the poem by the next day. We all nodded and she left.

Fast forward to the next day; she entered and asked if we memorized it. Faint mixture of ‘yes and no’ voice was vaguely heard and disappeared in the thin air quickly. Without losing a single moment, she made us stand up one by one and asked us to recite the poem from our memory. Only some did and many could not, including myself. And she asked us to justify the cause of our failure. No wonder, one of the students came up with a cunning excuse. ‘Teacher, I am yet to buy the textbook. Even if I wanted to, I could not memorize the poem.’ That was a valid justification. She asked if there were others with the same reason. Many raised their hands , I did not. Despite not having the textbook with me, I stood up not letting myself pardoned. Many got seated with big sigh of relief in their faces but I did not. We all had copied the poem the previous day in our exercise book. And if we wanted, we could have memorized the poem via that. My friends deceived the teacher. I did not want to do that. I cursed myself for not memorizing the poem. And I thought I deserved the punishment.

I was further asked, by the teacher, the reason of my failure to memorize the poem. I kept quiet. I did not want to demonstrate my honesty (about poem noted down on copies by everyone) as most of my friends got away from being punished with that cunning excuse. Had I told the teacher, they could have been ridiculed. I deserved the punishment and it was no point dragging my friends along with me. It was my idea to punish myself for what I did not do that I was asked of, when it could have been done easily. I was honest to myself. I was right to let me be punished. I was shameful for my failure but proud to what I did subsequently.

Sadly as I write this today, I am no more the same kid. The paragons of virtue, I possessed then, have come downhill. As I swim in my memory lane and meet myself from the past, I hardly can look straight at those honest eyes. Today, I am full of excuses, dishonesty and I lack dignity. At times, when I meet that kid in my memory lane, I get to learn a lot from him. From being that kid to now, I have come a long way, read hundreds of books, experienced a lot and still I remain a grown up with my dignity so down. I have not become better but gotten much worse.

This makes me think of William Wordsworth’s poem ‘The Rainbow’ also known as ‘My Heart Leaps Up’ where he states in the seventh line, ‘The child is the father of the man.’ It has been famously interpreted as ‘the conduct of a child indicates what he will become when he grows up’. But I wonder, if it matches with me? How about the other interpretation that I like and resembles to my situation? “The child could be a source of learning for adults; as far as his innocence, curiosity and honesty are concerned. As we grow up we would have lost them all, and it is time we re-learn them from the child?” This seems fair.

Pic. credit: http://enhanceyourchild.com

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Wayne Mark Rooney - Farewell to a Legend

Dear Wayne, it was Euro 2004 that I first got the glimpse of you. As a England fan (thanks to David Beckham for both club and country support), I was watching you (the 18 year old kid)  play for the first time as a 13 year old kid myself. As you scored two goals against Switzerland, I became your fan instantly, secretly wishing to see you in United's colour. Two months later, my wish came true and you were the most expensive teenager in Britain's history. What a signing you were.

David Beckham made me watch football and support United. But it was you, Wayne, who made me fall in love with this game. You were talented, passionate, hungry for goals, aggressive and tireless. It was such a privilege to watch you play. You were so selfless that you often sacrificed yourself for the sake of the team. You played in wings, center mid and attacking mid just to makeup the weak areas of the team. You were such a team player. Never selfish. It was pleasure to see you play. Every minute.

I never thought that this day would come to bid you farewell from Manchester United. I always wanted you, Wazza, to retire at United and used to think that you would go on till late thirties (at United). But, not everything goes the way we want. I was 13 when you came to the Theatre of Dreams and 13 years later, I feel that my childhood is over. My childhood hero is gone. My best player is gone. It will be a shame to see you in non-United colour. Dear Wayne, blue does not suit you at all. Not one bit. And it will be odd to see that legendary no. 10 Red Shirt worn by other player, no matter how high profile he is. How I wish you were still a Red Devil.

When I think of United, I think of you Wayne. And it will take some time for me to accept that you are gone. Every time we conceded, I searched for you to rescue us. I was always so sure that you would take us out of such situations and guide us to glory. And you did. You won us so many matches and trophies. I am habituated to that for 13 years Wayne. I know, when United concedes, I will still search you but you won't be there. How painful will that be? Goals of all sorts viz. acrobatic, tap ins, headers, long range, free-kicks, volleys, penalties and sublime chips will be missed. As selfless as you were, I will miss all the assists too and not to forget those Paul Scholes-esque diagonal balls and vision. Not to mention the passion for the game.

You came into the team full of talented players and legends of the game. But you fitted so perfectly like a missing puzzle. You came and you conquered; broke a number of records and wrote your name in the history books. I feel sorry for the youngsters who never got to see you play. Wayne Rooney from 2004 to 2012 was absolutely joy to watch and was a world winner. Your charisma, passion, hunger and selflessness for the game made me love you instantly and boy, it was never over. I kept adoring you making you the synonym of Manchester United. Your stats prove that you never disappointed.

Countless strikers came and departed the club but you remained. You were not perfect, you had your moments that proved you were human. You erred. But you covered those moments with your brilliance, repaying the fans with what they wanted from you. You delivered. And that explains your character. When you were on the field, it never felt like you were giving any less than 100%. You gave more. One more aspect I love about your game was you tracking back to win the ball from the opponent. You, a striker, were seen defending and within a flash, you were there counter-attacking and scoring a belter. At times, it was like seeing countless Rooneys on the same field at the same time. That was a joy to watch Wayne. But there is only one Rooney. And you are off to Everton. I will miss that particular passionate player on the field in a red shirt.

253 goals for Manchester United will stand tall for years to come. And perhaps, no one will break that record in the modern era of football where loyalty is rare. And that is what makes you a legend and like Ander Herrera mentioned I will gladly tell my grandchildren about you Wazza. In an era of (arguably) the two greatest of all time, Messi and Ronaldo, I will not let the story of certain Wayne Mark Rooney die. For what you did for United is no less and your name will forever be in Golden letters in the history of Manchester United. 'Remember the name, Wayne Rooney', Clive Tyldesley said when you broke into world football making waves as you scored that screamer against Arsenal in a blue shirt. No wonder, the world will remember your name for years as the (arguably) greatest Manchester United player.

As your big fan, I wish you all the very best for your future Rooney. You are still just 31 and can play around 5 years more (though you have got only 2 years' of contract at Everton, I hope it gets extended). During this time, I wish you score more goals and break another record that Alan Shearer holds. May you be the top scorer of Premier League too and also break into the England team. I hope you get selected for the World Cup team and score more goals for England, stretching the record far.

Before I stop writing, I would like to thank you Wayne for making me love this sport and for countless memories. I will never forget your goals and assists, your moments of magic and the inspiration that you injected in us through your play. Thank you for 13 superb years and 16 trophies. While you were here, you as a player won everything that could have been won. What a great career you had, Wazza. But it's time to part ways. Adios Captain. You came as a kid and left as a Legend. All the best for the future and yes, I would like to see you back in Old Trafford after you hang up your boots. Lastly, I would like to describe you in short borrowing a Martin Tyler quote here:

"Rooney! It defies description! How about 'sensational'? How about 'superb'?"

Farewell Legend. It's an end of an era. You have been a great servant of the club.


- Yours greatest fan,
Bhaskar Dhakal



rooo

Finally, I would like to share my top 10 goals of Wayne Rooney scored as a RED DEVIL.

10. What better than the debut goals to start with? I pick not one but all his 3 goals in this position. Hat-trick in a debut match in a European competition as a Red Devil. Wayne Rooney, You beauty!!



9. This goal is special  as this was his first against the Scousers and I loved the long range goal. Goal vs Liverpool is always so special :)



8.  That chip goal against Pompey in FA cup was genius.  Always in love with that goal. Shows the technical ability of Rooney. Brilliant.



7. What a counter attack from the deadly duo.. Ronnie and Rooney and what a sublime finish by Wayne Rooney..



6. This goal vs Arsenal is what a typical Rooney does.. Behold his run, his passion, undying hunger for the goal. And, not to forget his deadly finishing. This is perfect. (Just fast forward to 1:55 for the goal. I could not find the individual video)



5. The champions' League final goal vs Barca.. He scored but United lost. (fast forward to 1:16)



4. The record breaking goal via Freekick vs Stoke. What a goal that was to score 250th goal for United surpassing the legendary Sir Bobby Charlton.



3. The half way line volley from Rooney. Watch and adore..




2. Did we talk about volley? What better volley than this? An angry Rooney. A typical aggressive Wayne Rooney finishes a wonderful volley of all time.



1.  Rooney... Oh wonderful.. what a goal.. at what a time.. in what a place.. what a player.. Wayne Rooney.. out of this world..



the same video with better video resolution


Special mentions:





FFS, There are far too many special goals and I am getting too emotional, let's watch his 250 goals for United together..

2 AM Musing

"I just want to tell you nothing
You don't want to hear
All I want is for you to say
Oh why don't you just take me
Where I've never been before
I know you want to hear me
Catch my breath
I love you 'till the end."



It's midnight and I really craved to listen to this song 'Love you till the end' by Pogues. I did. And, instead of mollifying my craving, there was a ripple effect. Of course, what was I thinking? There's always a ripple effect, isn't it? Especially when you are not sleeping while the world is busy dreaming. So what's the ripple effect? Holy Moly! The ripples went afar to trigger the sweet memories of Holly and Gerry. Yes, I wanted to watch P.S. I love you, all of a sudden. I was half way through when the time steadily went on to greet the 2 AM mark, but the craving is too obdurate to settle for anything. There was another craving to write in my blog. So, this is it. I am writing stuffs. Now, the craving has changed its hand. Back to movie again. See ya later.

You might be wondering when I'll come write next. Yes, I am back now. Holly is reading the letter which Gerry left for her in his parents' home. Standing right at the Gerry's Fort, Holly reads the letter where Gerry describes the time they first met. 'I am lost', she says to Gerry, while in a state of quandary, after not knowing where she has reached. On the other hand, Gerry looks at her, gets stunned by her beauty and thinks to himself that she is not. This scene is one of my best movie scenes of all time. The chemistry between these two actors in this particular scene is so alluring that I must have watched this particular scene over a thousand times. Seriously. Hey! I am re-watching the scene. Excuse me for sometime though. Till then, why don't you play the Galway Girl?

I don't know if you played that song or not, but I finished watching the whole damn movie. Aah! this feels nice. Finally, the craving seems to be subsided. Sometimes, things go down the crazy lane and we go with the flow. Guess what? Happiness seems to come along that way though. Unplanned. Even I would not have predicted in my wildest dreams, let alone planned, to watch this movie at the quietest hour of the night. I might be the only person to watch movies like this alone. To crave for random things; ALONE. Well let me quote Holly's mother from the movie, "Thing to remember is if we are all alone then we are all together in it too." I watched the movie alone. You are reading this musing alone. And, at the end, we came together in our alone-ness. Thank you for the time at these odd hours. I crave for sleep now.

P.S. Guess what?

Forgiveness!!

How long can a thing bug you even after the umpteen attempts to let it go? Mahatma Gandhi said,"The weak can never forgive. Forgivenes...