Saturday, July 05, 2008

Wimbledon: Federer Vs Nadal, redux

Federer likes his not, his greatness would be decided this sunday on SW19, with the one man who he does not possibly want to meet. Or the man he most wants to meet.

On one hand you have the raw aggression of the Nadal, the guy who has improved from a muscular kid to one of the fittest, fastest players on the circuit. And the guy can think too. When he plays you play with him, right from his stupid superstition of wiping his biceps and adjusting his undies you just feel in awe of the awesome power of the guy and now you marvel at the sense of stage that he seems to have developed. The cranked up first serves on key points, the heavier spin the strokes and the sheer determination to win every point. Pure inspiration.

On the other hand you possibly have god himself playing, just one look at the guy. 3 sets in an hour, some hard aces, some placement serves, some amazing backhand winners all as if he is straight of the Milan fashion parade, in short pure genius. God will be proud of his creation.

But but but, Nadal has done what no body else has managed to do to Federer, get under his skin and force him to dig deeper and deeper. Federer has shown he is capable of doing that at Wimbledon, but in his heart even the great Federer must be thinking, I will be stopped by somebody in my career, is this kid it? He will not give in, because he might have to consider a Borgesque decision in case of a defeat and even if he does take such a decision he would want to leave on a winning streak.

The conditions this week have been pretty windy and looks like the trend is continuing in the ladies finals, that should aid Nadal, Federer does not like being off this rhythm. Nadal's mini struggle against Scheuttler showed us that the man was fallible after all and that would have offered Federer tremendous hope. Rafa did the same with Djokovic at the french semis, allowed him to sneak up a bit and then hammered him to a pulp again.

If indeed Nadal does manage to win, it will mark one of the most remarkable sports stories of all time. Lest there be any confusion of where my feelings are, Go Rafa Go

The problem of suicide?

The problem of suicide?

We keep hearing a lot of stupid (its appalling actually) stories about suicides these days. ( All religions have condemned it but there have been suicides from as far long as people can remember). Junta seem to be killing themselves on marks, love, sports, sex, religion et all. How they have lived life and killed themselves is important but more importantly what is the motivation for the average human being.

Camus considered the problem of suicide to be the fundamental problem of philosphy and life. Difficult not to agree with him.

The normal vigous that we associate with people ( of course combined with other different states) is towards general enjoyment of life and a fullfillment of potential or the path towards a goal.

If the above are not met, you might have considered the question or have the guts to follow the outcome you are as good as dead. Fucking wierd argument? Morbid, repulsive.

We can't ask camus, he committed suicide. His mind could not grapple with infinity you see.

Can our mind do it?


V for vendetta, saw that movie again some time last week and you have to hand it to the wachowski brothers to ask questions.

Is anarchy a long term solution? Looking at countries like china where dissent is killed easily (literally and figuratively) the larger audience seems to buy the official hard line arguments. How do you decide when a soceity is ready for anarchy?

Should soceities head towarda anarchy at all? I think the question is when and not should. The main concern with anarchy is the physical risk that it entails and hence the pain it could cause to the public at large. Historically anarchists have tended towards anarchy, but violent anarchy need not be the only possible method. For glory or infamy sure.

Why should soceities de generate?
1) They are tired of the atocities of the ruling parties. Anarchy as a protest against authoritarian regimes.
2) Against social order: a student backed cultural revolution to fight a dogmatic soceity
3) To throw away an existing way of life. Credit based life anyone? This is the systemic riskthat any soceity has. Most of the world famous revolutions have occurred as an expansion of initial poclets of anarchy.

Is anarchy set to reign in india? Not in the near future, but in my life time yes. Well educated individuals taking up naxalism is the first mark of a need to reject soceity. We are beginning to have deep geographic and economic schism s across different parts of the country and anarchy can spread llike a virus.

What will happen as an outcome of the resultant revolution? I don't want to know

Asking for too much? A sensible BJP??

Gujarat, MP, Bihar, Jharkhand, Chattisgarh, Haryana, Karnataka, Rajasthan.... What's common to these states? All of them are suled by the BJP. With tdp likely to see some gains along with other old allies such as amma, bjp has an excellent chance of wresting power from the upa.

But being the leaderless boat bereft of ideology all the hindu nationalist party can do is riot over a piece of land in god forsaken kashmir. Understandably there is the issue of the amarnath shrine involved- but not right now, not right now. The country is anyway reeling under mind numbingly stupid policy decisions to support mindless violence. The argument against the likes of Mufti Saeed and Omar Abdullah is firm, they are just supporting violence in order to protect their vote base, to stoke a feeling of religious fanaticism (why harmony would be there in the first place is a good question, in life dont really say two guys are equal do you? A is greater than B, A is better, A's religion is better, A is a superior human being. The trick is to achieve as much harmony to keep a larger peace) that will serve their purpose in the long run. But, BJP is precisely doing the same thing by supporting the violence by its own violence. But the BJP cant really take the stand of banning religion from public life can they? They can probably try it, nowhere does Hinduism need to be a public religion.

What the party has missed out on is catching a sympathy wave by supporting the congress on the nuclear deal. Advani would have gone on in the pages of history as a strategist. The party is going to have a no bigger advantage, it might even turn out to be better actually if there are poor monsoons, now or a year from now.

The bjp had its moment in the sun, as with indian politics it has got a shot at fame once again, will the party realize this and take the opportunity or just wallow in its pettiness? Time will tell.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Why you gotta love Rafa

Imagine yourself playing a game and everything you throw at an opponent comes back to you with interest?
And each time you play him, you actually think that the guy has improved a bit more on his basic game? Ladies and gentlemen, please salute the most improved player of the last 2 yrs. Its Rafael Nadal. Its not just his clay court game or how he blew away Federer at the final or his new found confidence on the grass courts. Its just about the way he plays, he knows his strengths, which is his fierce athleticism and his never give in attitude. Now with that you have the heavy topspin, the aces that he can hit to any part of the ground the net play and an overwhelming desire to keep on improving.

The most exquisite player ? Hardly. The best player on court regards talent, hardly, but you can sure bet on him pushing himself. And that s the difference between him and that other fighter Hewitt, Hewitt got consumed by just playing on and on without really competing against himself. Nadal is humble enough (atleast now) that the game he has brought alive is in his own mind and that he has to take care of each little aspect to keep the party going.

And man does the party rock, go Nadal go, SW19 I hope it will be.

Yes you can forget the undie adjusting, the man is true spirit.

Why the Spanish victory was pathbreaking?

No its not because of that great beauty Metzelder or the genius Mertesacker. Germany were always the team that intimidated opponents, the team that played to its strengths, yeah even though it meant just putting close as a pillar and hammering him with crosses so that something goes in (if you remember, Jan Koller is the master of that particular art). Germany also had a coach who was not afraid to be the the players faces, again no offense to the beard of Metzelder and make sharp changes. Even though removing Lahm nullified an attacking option, Kuranyi cant score a goal in 472 yrs, Leow put a message to the rest of the players. You are free to play your brand of football, but keep your head in control. Aragones got a good leap on him first by playing Xavi a bit forward (this change came from just before the goal that Xavi scored against Russia) and along what that push the entire midfield up a notch. You play in the other team's half simple.

All this is fine, but this Spanish side represents youth. Youth that really dont have any baggage with them only the glory and the old man really allowed them to play eh? You would have mistaken Sergio Ramos for a frigging striker. In a tournament where pure attack was the norm, Spain showed why they are always considered dark horses (funny why you would consider them to be dark for any reason). And the Saint was in a league of his own. He is one of my favorite players of Real Madrid and he showed remarkable leadership. Calm, composed.

This is was an attacking Euro 2008, if I was a sociologist, I would have said one that shows the growing hunger of the young in trying to achieve new benchmarks for themselves, the rise of the new confident Europe, one that is comfortable in itself.

Far from it, its frigging sport, Torres showed why he is God, spain won. Period.