Wednesday, 24 September, 2008


I pulled a scab off my shin today. I have no idea how the scab got there, but my shins are notoriously good at scraping themselves unintentionally on protuberant objects. This scab was on my left shin, and not cricket-induced; I haven't played at the Madhini's for ages.
It was most likely caused by my bike’s footrest or some other bike’s footrest in a parking lot, or the helmet lock left in the ‘up’ position by mistake as I threw my leg over to get on the bike, or my computer table. Next to it, incidentally, is where I sat as I pulled the scab off, causing rivulets of blood to flow down my shin, until my handkerchief soaked it all up.
I gave up writing this the day I began, and now, while I don’t remember pulling the scab off, I do remember writing about it; strange.
My handkerchief has soaked up blood on another recent occasion – a few months back, actually, when Rajesh Madhini whacked a straight drive into my nose. It was a tennis ball, mercifully. And in my last blog post, it soaked up coffee.
Ever since I can remember, I’ve carried a hanky around. You’re likelier to see one clutched tightly in my hand as I walk around in my uncoordinated way than not; seldom do they stay in my pocket very long. I also drop them a lot. I have had handkerchiefs trodden on by rampaging feet at football games; that even happened to my spectacles once, in the seventh or eighth standard.
Until about three months ago, I wore spectacles with pink frames. I’m colour blind, you see. And I didn’t have my mum or dad around while ordering the frames. I thought – dude, those brown ones are nicely inconspicuous, just the way you like them.
I like inconspicuousness. I even like the word inconspicuousness. This is the first time I’ve used it, in speech or in writing.
A couple of days back, I used the word aghast in a snooker report I wrote. I don’t know where that popped out from. “At 42-57 in the fifth, Sethi potted the blue at the top right, but watched aghast as the cue ball stopped with black bisecting its line on pink.”
Was he really aghast? I don’t know.
I played table tennis today – the third time in three months, at the Ergo office, only place at The Hindu where table tennis tables exist. The last time I played table tennis regularly was four years ago, or was it five?
It was at Rajesh and Pavan Madhini’s place. Where else?
The table earlier belonged in a house of their relatives, or family friends; I’ve never been sure. They let the Madhinis take it away, since no one was playing at that house any longer, or something of the sort. Pavan and I spent a whole day at that place, thinking of how best to relocate it to their place, a few streets away. We finally managed it; I don’t remember how. I do remember that in the time we were waiting, an old Telugu movie was being watched, and it had N.T. Rama Rao playing Krishna.
I haven’t ever watched a Telugu movie fully, from beginning to end. I have watched chunks, little and big, of a few, all at the Madhini’s. Where else?