Secret diary of a Cricinfo editor

Dear Diary,
The world is a crazy place, everybody and by that I mean even that retired bank manager who lives next to the Saravana Bhavan in Vadapalani, wants their share of the pudding. If I had my way, I’d give them a share of pudingi instead. With the disastrous Australian tour, most of the articles we’ve published or received have been attacking the team, talking of strong measures, young blood, and making sepak-takraw the new national sport. Lucky for us and especially me, since I’m the one sifting through thousands of emails during commentary & weeding out troll comments on articles, ‘The Dravidirement’ happened. For many it might sound just like like another cricketer calling it a day, but here at cricinfo, it is the equivalent of Santa Claus flying a kite armed with a Laxmi bomb into a giant Raavan effigy!. Every columnist, editor, and even the chaiwalla has a RSD tribute in their drafts. Right after Ganguly bowed out in Nov-08, we began writing Dravid & Laxman pieces, editing them whenever they scored or failed, picking up lines from books and saving them for use in either of these career obituaries. Just when we felt that an announcement would be around the corner & proof read our articles, they’d score a 100 or a 50 and regale the selectors.

Diary, please don’t think that I’m yet another rabid Sachin
without an
iota of moral fibre
rabid Sachin fan without an iota of moral fibre and someone who switches the TV off the moment his idol is gone. OK maybe I am, but who isn’t? Before I meander into singing paeans to the diminutive genius let me curb my enthusiasm this one time. All through his life Rahul Sharad Dravid has had to live in the shadows of a fellow achiever, let me give him his space atleast in my rant. Yes this is a rant, because our chief editor #unselected my tribute in favour of Mrs.Dravid. The tribute that I had dressed up so very well, recollecting the first time I shook hands with Dravid when he came to inaugurate the Sri Lalitha Jewellers store near my house. I even had pics of my sister kissing his poster on the wall and professing her undying love for him. She married a die-hard sachin fan, and RSD once again lost to SRT because along with her gothram, her cricket loyalties also changed. Coming back to Dravid, I still cannot believe that they would choose the emotional tribute by a sportsman’s wife over a masterpiece that was written over a period of two years by staff member!

In the immortal words of my second favourite sniffler/sun-gazer/cricketer Kris Srikkkkanth I would like to tell Vijeeta Dravid, Boss you just shut up nowBoss you just shut up now. Either be happy that your husband will be home now to get groceries, take the kids to school, ensure they finish their homework on time while you visit the spa & kitty parties. Or be sad that he will be around all the time, asking you stupid questions like why tomatoes are 23rs/kg and how to identify tender okra by breaking their tails. Your husband your life, what goes my father, but why you are kicking on the stomachs of poor editors like us? What about the hajaar retweets my article would have gotten on Twitter and the countless likes & shares on Facebook? So many girls would have sent me friend requests and fawned over my profile pics, my follower count would have gone past bladewallah & who knows even CBag! But no, none of that will happen as all my dreams have been squashed by that useless stupid wife of RSD.

Diary, I am pissed because this was the retirement of the year, only a SRT retirement(may that never happen, jai ganpati bappa) can upstage this one. When the Kambli retirement happened last year, we had to to use inky pinky ponky & select the
unfortunate one
to use inky pinky ponky & select the unfortunate one to write the mandatory report. The rest of us just googled for pics of his wife and compiled a ppt for internal circulation, while one chap was querying statsguru to compile the report. There was another guy called Rohan Jaivishwa who retired this year, he didn’t even have a player profile until we realised that he was Sunil Gavaskar’s son! I feel for the old man, he named his kid after three greats and the poor kid couldn’t even make it to the state team! #NoteToSelf: If you ever become famous cricketer, don’t let your son take up the game, for very few have gone to emulate their dads. The Dravid tributes are pouring in and ever since we let a civilian/non-staff-member like Vijeeta write one, the mother-sister of the cricinfo mailbox have been integrated. Last week we received one such tribute from a Mr.Trivedi, I failed to see how he was even remotely connected to Dravid. My boss however received word from government sources that he was the Minister for Railways & we had no choice but to schedule it to be published over the weekend. The very next day another tribute came in via post from a lady who wished to identify herself only as MB and the hand written letter was full of kisses. Diary, after the Vijeeta incident and the Rail Minister’s tribute I was ready to approve even my bai’s tribute to be published. This passionate tribute however was for a guy named ‘Drobidh‘ whom this lady fell in love with at Eden Gardens. Statsguru had no record of any such player and I had a haunch that it may have been one of our journos/photogs covering a game at Eden Gardens. I scanned and sent the letter to our internal mailing list list and forgot about it thereafter. Turns out she is a Chief Minister and got to know from her sources that her piece was #unselected while the Rail Ministers piece was okayed to be published. Turmoil in the government, chaos in Parliament over a cricinfo tribute but for political reasons they wish to disguise it as a fight against price-rise!

Deivame, I have been shitting bricks all weekend and stand to lose my job. I don’t even sleep in the direction of Bengal & have been having nightmares of Mamata Bannerjee chasing me as Kali. We were able to stop the Trivedi article from getting published, but boss says the damage has already been done.  Ayyayo, also some saalekuttekameeneneechpaapiharamilucchalafanga has leaked the Mamata Didi letter on the internet with all the kisses and horrible bong spelling. Even Dada who was all praise for an article I wrote after his comeback innings in South Africa may not be able to help me. If I don’t update this space, you probably know what happened to me.

Thank god, SRT’s wife cannot write!

PS: I am not knittins

(Image Courtesy: Cricinfo)