Normal reaction (as was in college) to bad news was to turn on heavy metal (especially ‘Sad But True’ followed by ‘Unforgiven’ by Metallica) really loud, so that the paint starts peeling off the walls, and then to spend the next few minutes just screaming my head off, or until it turns a nice shade of purple, which ever comes first. This is generally followed by general huffing and puffing, and screaming profanities at me in the mirror. All this culminates in the throwing of books (the really heavy ones) at a wall or at other heavy books . ( I know….disrespecting Saraswati….but what to do? They don’t allow arson at home or anywhere else). The rest of the day is spent listening to music with absolute filthy lyrics or general loudness (something like Hatebreed). Out come the mass zombie killing games and the virtual chainsaw. Meals are skipped as a self-imposed punishment. General scowl on face (worse than normal).
You know what? I just sounded like a really spoilt kid with a temper tantrum. So what? We all have our vices. Screaming at no one in particular while listening to heavy music is mine. Live with it. At least I’m not screaming at you.
But this time it was different. Something is wrong. I am too calm. I don’t seem to have any fits of rage. My day is going on as normal, like every other day, like I have not been witness to tragedy at all. I’ve not even listened to a single heavy metal song, instead chosen mellow tunes like Jack Johnson and Oasis. I’ve been quite cordial with everyone and have not found a corner to sit in and generally pout in anger. I didn’t even throw anything at any one. Feelings of setting the world on fire don’t seem to be arising out of my soul. Something is wrong!!! My heart is playing tricks on me. My mind tells me, “Dude, we now have a zippo….and a mini bar of our own…bring on the Molotov cocktails.” But my heart says, “ That is soooooo juvenile. Be patient, we’ve not learnt to lose yet”.
I’m all confused. I’m generally staring into space. ‘Bread-earning’ goes on as normal. Looking forward to Italian food and movie with the parental unit over the weekend. Shouldn’t I be locking myself in a high tower, away from human contact because I believe I have disgraced myself and am the scum that scum picks on? This to be followed by a few hours of self-torture??? No???? I don’t want to do that? Yikes…. I think it’s happened. I’ve become mature; and am learning to treat success and failure the same way. This is so wrong….so so wrong! Oh my God!!! (Meant that in the nicest atheist way) I’ve actually grown up. I’ve actually learnt to take bad news in my stride. Right now, I’m like a cocky Englishman from the days of old, after he’s seen the national team lose a game of cricket to the Aussies. I can picture myself saying, with a pipe in my mouth (to be said in a Brit accent….something more like Winston Churchill and less like Daniel Craig), “Oh well, jolly good shows chaps! You tried your best, but these Aussies managed to do you in. Pip pip boys! Pick up the pieces and we’ll discuss where we went wrong over a nice spot of tea!”
Hmmm….interesting! This is very interesting! I think I’m now ready to take the next step (whatever that is).