spoon

Schumi is back - again?!

23

Category: , , , , ,

When Ferrari’s Felipe Massa, who is my favourite driver, crashed his car into the tyre barrier in the qualifying race of Hungarian Grand Prix last year and suffered a massive head injury, I was disheartened. A day later when I heard the news that seven time world champion Michael Schumacher would take the wheel, I was rapturous, but only to get skeptical later.

Now, it’s official. He’s racing for Mercedes Brawn GP.

Boy, am I excited?!

Formula one is tougher than ever. The cars’ designs have undergone a meteoric change with KERS technology, considerably small cock-pit and much narrower than the ones seen 2-3 years earlier. It is in one of these cars that Schumi has to race this season.

Had it not been for his neck injury he’d have made his comeback last year itself. “I can never think of racing again,” he had repeatedly said after retirement. Now that he has decided to race again after four years, it’s only obvious that he cannot think of living without racing. Such is his passion. But will he able to live up to his standards? I hope he will.

Come this march he will be racing his 250th Grand Prix, in Bahrain. His comeback, like that of Lance Armstrong to the Tour de France, will be subjected to a lot of public scrutiny and the sport will definitely be much more interesting. Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettal, who is my second favourite and McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton were just four and six years old respectively when Schumacher first raced a formula one car. But these two have the caliber to outdo their role model; Vettal could be as aggressive as ever if need be and Hamilton, with his swift and controlled maneuvering, could pose a real challenge to everyone on the race track, let alone Schumacher. To top it all, there is Ferrari’s Felipe Massa, last year’s champion Jenson Button (who is racing for McLaren this year along with Hamilton) and two time world champion Fernando Alonso (Ferrari). Well, it’s not going to be easy for Schumi.


***


Sanath Jayasurya could be playing well in his 40s, Sachin Tendulkar might play for another two years, Dhanraj Pillai might live up to our expectations if he ever makes a comeback, Lance Armstrong could be pedaling well at this age; but making a comeback and driving a formula one car at the age of 41 is not easy, for it is the bravest, toughest, riskiest and the most fascinating sport in the world. And no sportsman goes through as much punishment as a formula one driver. To drive a formula one car one should not only have a lion’s heart, but also a mother’s fingers to steer the wheel to perfection.

To know why formula one is considered THE toughest sport in the world, click HERE. If you haven't heard about this great sport's amazing facts, it's high time you knew them, or else you'll be missing a lot.


***


The sport’s oldest champion remains the late Argentine Juan Manual Fangio, who won his fifth title at the age of 46. The oldest driver to win a Grand Prix is Italian Luigi Fagioli in 1951 at the age of 53.

But these were not comebacks.

The only two examples are Niki Luada of Austria and Nigel Mansell of UK. But Schumacher can’t afford to take much inspiration from these two.

Niki Lauda, having won the championship in 1975 and 1977, left formula one at the end of 1979, only to return two years later with McLaren and picked up his third title in 1984 at the age of 35.

Nigel Mansell quit after winning the championship with Williams in 1992 and made a brief four-race comeback after Ayrton Senna’s death in 1994, winning only one GP. He then humiliated himself the following year, attempting a full-scale return, when he could not fit into the car. He was 42 years old.


***


In spite of all these obstacles no one can doubt the extent of Schumacher’s commitment to his passion. He does (and is doing) whatever it takes to make himself competitive with the new generation. He never stopped training in his retirement and he sees no reason why he shouldn’t win this time.

Go Schumi Go!

Go he will because go he must.

With four new teams (Lotus, Campos, Virgin, and US) making their debuts this season, the first race is on 14th March: Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix. The lap record on this track is 1:30.252 – set by Michael Schumacher in 2004.

I’m thrilled. Are you?


Copyright © Karthik 2010


My Colourful World - (Blog-a-ton 6)

126

Category: , , , , , , ,


This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 6; the sixth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.

***


1


Love stories have never fascinated me, neither in print nor on screen. For they are lame and boring, I despised them. Then again it doesn’t mean I can’t fall in love with a girl. And that’s what I did: I fell in love. But I didn’t know that the after effects could be so tiresome.

Now, sitting at my favourite table in my room, deep in thought, with a blank sheet of paper in front of me, I was lost, for a herculean task lay in front of me – a task of writing a love letter to my love.

I had never written one in the past; in fact, I had never felt the need of it. “That’s preposterous,” I had often said to my friends. But now I had to.

When I had proposed to Meena, she had cringed and asked, “What kind of a proposal was that?”

I thought I was being very romantic, but little did I know that I had done it in an utmost unromantic way. But now that I have learnt my lesson, let me tell you. Proposing to a girl is like selling a product. Product should be good of course, but just in case it isn’t, at least the packaging should be made to look attractive with a lot of embellishments. In fact, these days, packaging is all that works. And finally, ‘how’ you sell is more important than ‘what’ the product is. My case was a bit different though. Packaging, product and also the way of selling were not good. Hence the question, ‘What kind of a proposal was that?’

“What else do you expect me to do?” I had asked.

“You come to me like a moron and say that you love me, and you expect me to accept your proposal? Just like that?”

“But I can’t do all those filmy things, Meena. They are yucky!”

“Whatever. At least write me a love letter – on a sheet of paper.”

“What?! Love letter? You expect me to write a love letter? We are living in a digital world, for heavens’ sake.”

“Yeah, but I’m an old fashioned girl, you see,” she had said and walked away, smiling to herself.

I very well knew she was a pragmatic girl, but then again a girl is a girl – a kind of species with X chromosomes. Hence the nakhras! I perfectly knew she was anything, but foolishly romantic. I was just being played by my lady love.

‘Fine. You want me to write a love letter? I will write it. It’s just a piece of cake on a piece of paper,’ I had said to myself and taken up the challenge.

But what I didn’t know then was that, to write a love letter, one needed to use 7% of his brain, whereas Albert Einstein used only 5% during his entire life.


2


Now, sitting at my ‘thinking’ table, I was disoriented. The blank sheet of paper on the table perfectly reflected my state of mind. I hadn’t written a single word in the past one hour. I was frustrated. I got up from the chair, threw away the pen on the cot, and started walking towards the door. I then stopped midway, swiveled round, walked back to my table and sat down again, picking the pen up. I had to write it at any cost.

The world around and inside me was very colourful indeed. But there was one small encumbrance. Those colours were not only bad, but pathetic: pink, red and yellow. Damn!

Pink had occupied the major portion of my world. Why? Don’t really know for sure. Maybe Meena represented pink. Gosh! What’s with girls and pink?! Then, my head was full of crap, and hence yellow. And finally, no matter how hard I tried to get up and go, I couldn’t just do it, for I believe someone had dabbed the bottom portion of my world with red colour, as if telling me, ‘Danger: don’t you dare get up and go’, and then put a Lakshman Rekha over it with a black black-magic pencil. Now that completes the picture. Whoever drew that crappy picture of mine, sitting at my ‘thinking’ table, with a pen in my hand, and head full of crap, deep in thought!


*********


“All right. Let’s do it,” I said to no one in particular, not even to myself. I was a confused soul.

‘Dear Meena,’ I wrote after five full minutes of contemplating.

“Goddamn it!” I cursed myself. ‘Dear Meena’ was too formal. I crumpled the sheet of paper and threw it in the dustbin.

‘Well, yes, maybe “Meena dearest” sounds good,’ I thought and wrote the same on a new sheet of paper.

No way! Rule no. 1: Never try too hard to please a girl. Be natural.

So that sheet of paper too ended up in the dustbin. I thought of being natural and wrote, “Meena, my love.” Was it overly romantic? I didn’t really know.

Without thinking further, I crumpled the paper again and threw it. I was anyhow giving the letter to her, so why mention her name. So I just wrote ‘My love,’ on a fresh paper. I was now convinced.

I finally started writing the body of the letter. “You are the most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen…” I stopped writing and analyzed the sentence. Was she the most beautiful? Naaah…! Kavya was more beautiful than Meena. Love letter should always be honest. So I threw away the paper again.

I wrote, “My love, I’ve always loved you…”

Aaaaarrggghhh. This was not going anywhere. ‘Ok dude, calm down. You can do it. You will do it. Take a deep breath,’ I said to myself and took a new sheet of paper.

I changed the whole format and started.

“Dearest, it’s not that I think you are the most beautiful girl in this world. There are certainly many babes around, but whenever I see you or talk to you or simply be with you or hear your voice or look at those beautiful eyes and many other things I can’t mention, my mind attains its state of tranquility. You are not the girl of my dreams, but the girl of my life, my reality.”

‘Splendid!’ I felicitated myself. But I soon got skeptical. “There are certainly many babes around…?” Oh, what was I thinking?! Nope. This wasn’t working all right. So I again crumpled the paper a la filmy hero and threw it in the wastebasket.


3


Three hours passed and I was still sitting at the table, with pathetic colours around and inside me. The wastebasket was full and brimming with life. Not one letter was worthy enough to make it inside the envelope. Finally, the envelope too ended up in the dustbin.

I knew she too had feelings for me, but then again she was just playing by the rules – rules of chicks. One of the rules says, ‘When a boy proposes to you, never accept it immediately.’ So she couldn’t have helped it. She was bound by the rules.

I was distraught and decided to call if off. I cleaned my table, put the pen back in its holder, and got up from the chair. No more of this love letter business. I can’t do it. It’s not my cup of tea.

And then, I did the unthinkable.


*********


The next day I got a message from Meena. She was coming to my room at six in the evening. I combed my hair, wore cologne, my favourite shirt and jeans, and waited for her with bated breath. I knew she was coming to blast me, but that didn’t matter. I had tried at least.

The previous day, I had mailed her a package. And in it were all the crumpled balls of paper – the proof of my futile attempts to write her a love letter. That was my idea of telling her that I had tried my best. I think probably no boy in this world has ever tried to do as crazy as a thing like this. Now which boy wants his girl to read the trial versions of his love letter?! Well, I was an exception. This would go down in the history of love letter writing, I was sure. An example of what a boy shouldn’t do – should never do.

I was about to be proved wrong.


4


Meena didn’t utter a single word when she came inside my room. In my attempt to impress her with my sophisticated dress code, I had forgotten to clean up my room. Clothes, DVDs and CDs were scattered all over the room, empty beer bottles and cans, newspapers and magazines occupied the chairs and cupboards. My room was at its filthiest best.

I picked up the clothes and made some space for her. When I went to pick up the bottles and cans, she said, “That’s all right.” I was so glad.

We sat at my ‘thinking’ table, diagonally across each other. I said, “Listen…I didn’t mean to… I mean I couldn’t think straight… You know, I’m a very straight guy… Damn! Of course I am straight. I mean these conventional proposal techniques are not my thingies. I am sorry. I know I am not romantic enough to,” –

“Who said you are not romantic?” she said, cutting me off.

“Huh?” I was rather nonplussed.

“You know, if you’d written a flowery love letter, I’d probably have puked,” she said.

“What?! But you asked me to write one.”

“Well, I was curious to know of course. Even if you’d told me directly that you were not going to try it, I’d not have bothered.”

I arched my brows, I crinkled my eyes, I frowned, I smirked, I scratched my head – I was utterly baffled.

She giggled.

“So you read all those I sent you? Please tell me you didn’t,” I finally said, realizing that sending the package was a mistake.

“Yes. I read all the thirty-six attempts,” she said and laughed.

“Oh, damn! What have I done?! I cried.

She looked me in the eye and said, “You know what; when one writes a love letter, his true feelings are manifested on those papers that end up in a wastebasket. The final edition is always sugary, but unfortunately, it isn’t sweet. It’s just a vague attempt to impress the reader. A girl like me can easily look through it. I am fortunate to have known what you really feel about me,” she stopped for a moment and then continued, “And I don’t think you’ll ever be able say those things you desperately tried to say in those letters. I am perfectly ok with it,” she said, ruffling my hair.

I sat there speechless. She smiled.

And what a smile it was! Her full scarlet lips broke into a beautiful curve as a twinkle came into her forget-me-not eyes. It was similar to seeing a red rose blooming on an early dew-filled morning.

While we sat there looking at each other, a jet of cool breeze hit our faces pleasantly. Her lustrous black hair got all tousled and came over her lovely face, disturbing her candid eyes and the red petals of her mouth. Damn! How I hated the breeze then! She gave a small frown and brought her gentle fingers to her face and brushed those curly disheveled strands of hair to the back of her ears.

She gave her winsome smile again and asked me, “So, aren’t you going to say anything?”

I struck a pose by cradling my chin with my thumb and forefinger, and said, “Well, is it necessary?”

“Well, I think not,” she said and gave me a wink.


*********


After a while she asked, tapping her hand on my ‘thinking’ table, “Is this the table, which bore the pain of your love letter writing exercise? Is this the same table you keep talking about?”

I grinned, smoothed my hair and said demurely, “Yeah.”

After all it had proved lucky for me. And now, if anyone had drawn my picture, it would’ve been full of interesting colours, and the picture would’ve looked spectacular, unlike the one in this story.


********************The End********************

Copyright © Karthik 2010


The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.


You might also like

Related Posts with Thumbnails

My Library

Karthik's Book Montage

The Negotiator
Malgudi Days
As The Crow Flies
Swami and Friends
The Devil's Alternative
The Picture of Dorian Gray
The Godfather
The Seven Minutes
The Prize
Atlas Shrugged
The Fountainhead
If Tomorrow Comes
Digital Fortress
The Chancellor Manuscript
The Bourne Supremacy
The Bourne Identity
The Fist of God
The Fourth Protocol
The Odessa File
The Day of the Jackal


Karthik's favorite books »