Musings on moving

There is always a sense of melancholiness associated with moving apartments / houses. All of one’s life’s thoughts, dreams, hopes, aspirations, happiness and sadness are suddenly neatly packaged into boxes. One also opens older boxes , which one packed a long time ago, thereby recovering memories from an age gone by. A old birthday card your sister sent becomes especially poignant, when the current state of that relationship has hit a bit of a trough, the random donations one made to hospitals (was I capable of those acts of kindness at one point? whatever happened to all that kindness now? Why cannot one be kinder to one’s parents atleast, who have done so much for their children?), the photocopied books in myriad subjects like math, music, Indian philosophy and cricket (looking at these from 10 years ago, I am staggered that I had actually wanted to read these dense, abstruse tomes at one point in my life), the romantic idealism of one’s early twenties gives way to a more painful sense of reality at 30. This was supposed to be the decade that separated boyhood from manhood in some sense. I am struggling to demarcate that mentally. A feeling remains of not having “grown up”, (in the truest, deepest sense of that word). Although, I loved books and reading and learning, I never thought I would spend my entire twenties in graduate school. Relationships, unlike the beautiful subjects like math and music are messy and complicated. One has no idea of what is reasonable and what is not. Naively, one wishes to marry happiness rather than a person. (Ramana Maharishi’s prescient observation that all beings desire happiness at all points of time is the natural, immutable law valid for all time, comes to mind). Falling in love though is easy, abstracted love is easier than the concrete actual, messy thing. Do these crushes / infatuations etc that strike you unannounced leaving you with powerful feelings and exhaustion actually have an inner, deeper meaning or are they completely random and capricious? Is love at first sight, the kind that they show in movies and the kind that one reads about in Shakespearean plays actually true in real life? (It does seem true when it hits you, but for a guy like me, the lines between reality and fantasy were always a bit blurred). Nostalgia has grown. So has sentimentality. Watching older cricket videos from one’s childhood moves me to tears (which cricket lover wouldn’t be moved by the silken, delicate touch of Mohammad Azharuddin, what does one do when one loves cricket to such an extent that simply watching a two minute video of a tour game: Australians vs West Indies Board President’s Eleven and watching Fawad Ahmed bowl beautiful, classical leg spin and watching those young West Indian batsman take on the Australian bowlers fearlessly fills one with so much joy). The feeling remains though of what could have been, had one concentrated on the math and not just floated like a leaf in the whirlpool of life, allowing it to take you in the direction of its choosing. Having not built up the stamina to keep at mathematics amidst all distractions during one’s formative years, one really struggles to dig deeper for extra ounces of strength when one’s research hits some rough spots.

Vijay Samuel Hazare

The original and greatest Test batsman India has produced. Scored a century in each innings in the Adelaide test during independent India’s first ever cricket tour in 1947 – 48. From a little village Sangli in Maharashtra, the bulwark of the Rest of India team in the Bombay Pentangular tournament in the 1940’s, a man of few words, modest and unassuming, possessing a great batting game in both attack and defense, what’s not to like about this great man :)


Freedom and Love



Give all to love;
Obey thy heart;
Friends, kindred, days,
Estate, good fame,
Plans, credit, and the muse;
Nothing refuse.

‘Tis a brave master,
Let it have scope,
Follow it utterly,
Hope beyond hope;
High and more high,
It dives into noon,
With wing unspent,
Untold intent;
But ’tis a god,
Knows its own path,
And the outlets of the sky.
‘Tis not for the mean,
It requireth courage stout,
Souls above doubt,
Valor unbending;
Such ’twill reward,
They shall return
More than they were,
And ever ascending.

Leave all for love;—
Yet, hear me, yet,
One word more thy heart behoved,
One pulse more of firm endeavor,
Keep thee to-day,
To-morrow, for ever,
Free as an Arab
Of thy beloved.
Cling with life to the maid;
But when the surprise,
Vague shadow of surmise,
Flits across her bosom young
Of a joy apart from thee,
Free be she, fancy-free,
Do not thou detain a hem,
Nor the palest rose she flung
From her summer diadem.

Though thou loved her as thyself,
As a self of purer clay,
Tho’ her parting dims the day,
Stealing grace from all alive,
Heartily know,
When half-gods go,
The gods arrive.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Musings on the Moore market and Mir books

Looking at this lovely blog which collects books published by the venerable Mir publishers, I cannot help but recall the happy happy days spent browsing books at Moore market in the Chennai Central Railway station. My train from Mangalore would come sometime in the evening and I would spend a couple of hours happily browsing these books. Any teenager madly in love with math and physics would instantly fall in love with the beautiful Mir books published in the Soviet Union. They were like a cross between Schaums outlines and the magnum opus written by the fields’ experts in that they were extremely practical, teaching you how to solve problems while at the same time they somehow managed to convey the beauty and feeling associated with the subject, not to mention that they sometimes had the dry, spare style reminiscent of Rudin’s analysis books, they never contained the colorful terminology of the standard American textbook like the sandwich theorem etc. No glossy paper, no distracting color photographs. Science at its pure best. Of course they were all extremely affordable, one could actually, in those days, get a Mir book for a prize of a good meal in a restaurant and spend many pleasurable hours poring and wondering. Happy memories.

A raagam for the day….

….is Durbaari Kaanada. A lovely new song in the upcoming movie OK Kanmani, Naane Varugiren has me completely drenched in Durbaari Kaanada. Beautifully done song this, both the singing and the orchestral work. Rajan Parrikar has a lovely article about allied raagas here:

The audio samples in this page are absolutely priceless in conveying a general understanding of the raagam, especially the one by Ramashreya Ramrang, completely conveys the basic essence of Durbari Kaanada in about two minutes. Beautiful.

Ryokan on the perils of thoughtless speech

This is primarily for myself. I should be reminded of this every so often.

Talk is always easy
Practice always hard
It’s no wonder people try to make up for
their lack of hard practice with easy talk
But the harder they try, the worse things get
The more they talk, the more wrong they go
It’s like pouring on oil to put out a fire
Just foolishness and nothing else.

Taigu Ryokan.

The perfect test match

With the passing away of Richie Benaud, what a lovely commentator he was, it is time to recall the most perfect test match ever played. The 1960-61 tied test match between Australia and West Indies at Brisbane. In days past, I would look for hours upon hours at old score cards from days gone by, trying to recreate those games in my head, aided by the writings of the old cricket masters.

The Frank Worrell Trophy – 1st Test
Australia v West Indies
Match tied
Test no. 498 | 1960/61 season
Played at Brisbane Cricket Ground, Woolloongabba, Brisbane
9,10,12,13,14 December 1960 (5-day match)
West Indies 1st innings R M 4s 6s
CC Hunte c Benaud b Davidson 24 37 4 0
CW Smith c †Grout b Davidson 7 26 0 0
RB Kanhai c †Grout b Davidson 15 32 3 0
GS Sobers c Kline b Meckiff 132 174 21 0
FMM Worrell* c †Grout b Davidson 65 159 8 0
JS Solomon hit wicket b Simpson 65 141 8 0
PD Lashley c †Grout b Kline 19 36 2 1
FCM Alexander† c Davidson b Kline 60 190 5 0
S Ramadhin c Harvey b Davidson 12 12 2 0
WW Hall st †Grout b Kline 50 69 8 0
AL Valentine not out 0 2 0 0
Extras (lb 3, w 1) 4
Total (all out; 100.6 overs) 453 (3.37 runs per 6 balls)
Fall of wickets 1-23 (Smith), 2-42 (Hunte), 3-65 (Kanhai), 4-239 (Sobers), 5-243 (Worrell), 6-283 (Lashley), 7-347 (Solomon), 8-366 (Ramadhin), 9-452 (Hall), 10-453 (Alexander)
Bowling O M R W Econ
AK Davidson 30 2 135 5 3.37
I Meckiff 18 0 129 1 5.37
KD Mackay 3 0 15 0 3.75
R Benaud 24 3 93 0 2.90
RB Simpson 8 0 25 1 2.34
LF Kline 17.6 6 52 3 2.19
Australia 1st innings R M 4s 6s
CC McDonald c Hunte b Sobers 57 111 6 0
RB Simpson b Ramadhin 92 260 7 0
RN Harvey b Valentine 15 63 0 0
NC O’Neill c Valentine b Hall 181 401 22 0
LE Favell run out 45 93 1 2
KD Mackay b Sobers 35 104 4 0
AK Davidson c †Alexander b Hall 44 81 4 0
R Benaud* lbw b Hall 10 17 0 0
ATW Grout† lbw b Hall 4 4 1 0
I Meckiff run out 4 6 0 0
LF Kline not out 3 5 0 0
Extras (b 2, lb 8, w 1, nb 4) 15
Total (all out; 130.3 overs) 505 (2.90 runs per 6 balls)
Fall of wickets 1-84 (McDonald), 2-138 (Harvey), 3-194 (Simpson), 4-278 (Favell), 5-381 (Mackay), 6-469 (Davidson), 7-484 (Benaud), 8-489 (Grout), 9-496 (Meckiff), 10-505 (O’Neill)
Bowling O M R W Econ
WW Hall 29.3 1 140 4 3.57
FMM Worrell 30 0 93 0 2.32
GS Sobers 32 0 115 2 2.69
AL Valentine 24 6 82 1 2.56
S Ramadhin 15 1 60 1 3.00
West Indies 2nd innings R M 4s 6s
CC Hunte c Simpson b Mackay 39 88 5 0
CW Smith c O’Neill b Davidson 6 22 0 0
RB Kanhai c †Grout b Davidson 54 112 7 0
GS Sobers b Davidson 14 28 2 0
FMM Worrell* c †Grout b Davidson 65 151 8 0
JS Solomon lbw b Simpson 47 222 2 0
PD Lashley b Davidson 0 2 0 0
FCM Alexander† b Benaud 5 67 0 0
S Ramadhin c Harvey b Simpson 6 11 1 0
WW Hall b Davidson 18 45 1 0
AL Valentine not out 7 41 0 0
Extras (b 14, lb 7, w 2) 23
Total (all out; 92.6 overs) 284 (2.29 runs per 6 balls)
Fall of wickets 1-13 (Smith), 2-88 (Hunte), 3-114 (Sobers), 4-127 (Kanhai), 5-210 (Worrell), 6-210 (Lashley), 7-241 (Alexander), 8-250 (Ramadhin), 9-253 (Solomon), 10-284 (Hall)
Bowling O M R W Econ
AK Davidson 24.6 4 87 6 2.63
I Meckiff 4 1 19 0 3.56
KD Mackay 21 7 52 1 1.85
R Benaud 31 6 69 1 1.66
RB Simpson 7 2 18 2 1.92
LF Kline 4 0 14 0 2.62
NC O’Neill 1 0 2 0 1.50
Australia 2nd innings (target: 233 runs) R M B 4s 6s SR
CC McDonald b Worrell 16 91 0 0
RB Simpson c sub (LR Gibbs) b Hall 0 14 0 0
RN Harvey c Sobers b Hall 5 10 1 0
NC O’Neill c †Alexander b Hall 26 61 4 0
LE Favell c Solomon b Hall 7 20 1 0
KD Mackay b Ramadhin 28 78 2 0
AK Davidson run out 80 194 8 0
R Benaud* c †Alexander b Hall 52 136 6 0
ATW Grout† run out 2 8 3 0 0 66.66
I Meckiff run out 2 7 3 0 0 66.66
LF Kline not out 0 1 1 0 0 0.00
Extras (b 2, lb 9, nb 3) 14
Total (all out; 68.7 overs) 232 (2.52 runs per 6 balls)
Fall of wickets 1-1 (Simpson), 2-7 (Harvey), 3-49 (O’Neill), 4-49 (McDonald), 5-57 (Favell), 6-92 (Mackay), 7-226 (Davidson), 8-228 (Benaud), 9-232 (Grout), 10-232 (Meckiff)
Bowling O M R W Econ
WW Hall 17.7 3 63 5 2.64
FMM Worrell 16 3 41 1 1.92
GS Sobers 8 0 30 0 2.81
AL Valentine 10 4 27 0 2.02
S Ramadhin 17 3 57 1 2.51

Balls per over 8
Toss – West Indies, who chose to bat
Series – 5-match series level 0-0
Test debuts – PD Lashley and CW Smith (West Indies)
Umpires – CJ Egar and C Hoy
Close of play
Fri, 9 Dec – day 1 – West Indies 1st innings 359/7 (FCM Alexander 21*, S Ramadhin 9*)
Sat, 10 Dec – day 2 – Australia 1st innings 196/3 (NC O’Neill 28*, LE Favell 1*)
Sun, 11 Dec – rest day
Mon, 12 Dec – day 3 – West Indies 2nd innings 0/0 (CC Hunte 0*, CW Smith 0*)
Tue, 13 Dec – day 4 – West Indies 2nd innings 259/9 (WW Hall 0*, AL Valentine 0*)
Wed, 14 Dec – day 5 – Australia 2nd innings 232 (68.7 ov) – end of match

12th Men: JW Martin (Australia) and LR Gibbs (West Indies)
Davidson was the first man to complete the match double of 100 runs and 10 wickets in a Test match.
The partnership of 134 for the seventh wicket, in the second innings, was a record for Australia against the West Indies for that wicket.


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