This is an edited version of a letter than I sent to a closed mailing list. I try to write one everyday to a select set of people. Should you want to get one in your mailbox, please do let me know. The first letter is here. A complete archive is here.
So, I played cricket today. Properly. Bowled, batted and all that. Must have played after a year. And back then, about a year ago, when I played, I would've played after decades. With a S. More than one. Serious.
Here are the things that I take away from the experience. Lol. Experience :)
A. I enjoy physical activity. I love to move around.
And contrary to what people close to me believe, I am not inherently lazy - its the heat that has made me lazy. And I hate wearing shoes or too many clothes. If I could live in a cold country, I promise I would dress up well and even wear shoes. And I would love to move around.
B. My game sucks.
Of course there are no surprises. If it dint suck, I wouldnt be here. Writing about the experience. But today, it sucked so bad that I am embarrassed. Well, I have never been a batsman but I used to be a pretty handy bowler. And I was a brilliant fielder if nothing else. While I bowled ok today, and batted as expected, I was probably the worst fielder that I have ever been. There was no hand-eye coordination, something that I have been proud of all my life. I MUST improve. And no, I cant really "practise" but I need to get better. May be if I get regular things will improve?
C. My fitness sucks more than I suck at the game.
If I dont get regular and dont improve, I guess it will be ok. I am anyway way past my prime and I cant even imagine playing at the highest levels. But the game today made me realise how unfit I am. And at all levels. Thankfully I wasnt really panting (maybe I dint run too much?) but I couldve run faster, been more agile, fielded better! And after the game, each part of the body was hurting. And hurting as in HURTing. If I had a "functional" home, I would have sprayed myself all over with some painkiller or something. I even wished I had a masseuse to ease the pain. And although its past 11 (and thus about 12 hours since the game ended), my ankles, tendons, calves, knees and the back still hurt like crazy. Well, the Achilles tendon and the knee's been giving me problems for some time but the calf and the back is new. Side note. When I wear the Nike sneakers, the pain is little bearable. I need to wear them more often, once the weather becomes bearable.
In fact, here's a lesson. Things that connect you to the ground (Earth), you MUST not compromise and invest into getting the best possible alternative.
A few things that "connect" you to the ground are mattress (and the bed), shoes, chairs, footwear etc.
I dont recall where I read this first but more I think about this, more sense it makes. Its cool if you want to buy a cheap phone, shabbily made dress etc. But your feet take the most of the grunt in the day. You better have great shoes. And no, not fancy or goodlooking ones. But functional ones. And the only two brands that I recommend are Nike and Crocs. Ditto for mattress. And chair. Think about it. Use logic.
D. I love my mornings! I may claim to love nights but I love my mornings even more. To the point that the day my mornings dont go as per plan, the entire day is wasted. Take today for example. In my scheme of things, mornings are not meant for exercise et al. But then a game like Cricket requires a team and for most others, morning is where fitness takes priority!
Coming back. The days I cant get up early and step out of the house and get some things done, I feel terrible and the entire day gets "wasted". I mean today, all I have done is write for a bit, worked on SoG for a bit and agonised in the pain inflicted by the minuscule amount of cricket that I played!
If I were to club A, B and D, I need to probably find a sport that makes me move around and can be played at afternoons. Or late evenings.
And you could try and understand if you are a morning person or a night person. How do you find out? Not through what you love. But as Charlie says, invert! Question to ask yourself is, "fucking what part of the day affects you the most?" For me, its the morning! You?
E. Sports bonds people like nothing else.
The people I played with, they were probably aged between 20 and 45. And from different backgrounds, interest areas, personalities, varying degree of proficiency and all that. But while playing, most of them had the single-minded focus of the game. And they could do whatever for their team to win. They dint think about their differences and they came together to focus on the game!
Can I take lessons and use sports as as tool to make my team at C4E and all other initiatives more tight-knit?
I have seen team-building games in action at most of the events that I have worked on as an event manager but most clients do it as mere lip-service. They do it once a year and hope for miracles. Can I use create an ongoing intervention that makes my team come closer? Need to think.
And, having said that, I know that sports can also create great divides. I saw it happen today. And we all know about "enmity" between fans of competing teams! So, need to put some thought!
So yeah, thats about it for the day.
Over and out.