The Lament Of Loss

Poulomee BasuCorrespondent IApril 9, 2009

Yesterday, I was in a strange frame of mind—looking at everything with grey coloured glasses.

I know everyone has those days when they feel melancholy. Feeling sad is one thing, but feeling defeated is quite another.

And then I decided to take a break and do some you-tubing. Now don’t ask me why, but I watched a few post match interviews—not of the winners but the losers. 

Almost as soon as I started, I knew it was a bad idea.

Rafa was up first. After his match with Del Potro. The whole interview can be summed up in one word—bizarre.

Not only did he give some rather vague and convoluted answers, he went on to say he has personal reasons for his dismal performance in Miami. rafa giving excuses? surely not!

Fidgeting more than his usual amount and avoiding eye contact, he went on to call the match an amazing disaster. And surprise surprise, he almost insinuated that had Del Potro played to his best ability he would have been beaten much more easily!

Now, I have heard him after many loses but this one was quite different.  His tone was not just sad.

I couldn’t place my finger on what it was. His humour seemed unusually self derisive—a quality I usually find so likable.

But there was nothing likable about that five minute video. He sounded like he ached inside. ( )He sounded a little like me—defeated.

Next up was Roger, who seemed like a ghost of himself at his press conference. I advise Federer fans to never watch that video. Not only was he on the verge of tears the entire time, he said he is glad to move on to clay soon! (

I couldn’t help but wonder about Roger then. He is an enigma of late. i am not talking about his safin-inspired racket smashing in particular but i must say the man seems to be drained of all confidence.

At the end of the day I was heartbroken, and completely overwhelmed.

I know what people will say now: “to err is human and it’s only a masters series.”

To be honest, the fact that they were competing for a mere master’s title has never seemed more inconsequential. 

And about them being humans—this is what I have been told ever since I was little. I understand it, but I don’t believe it.

Of course they are humans biologically, but they are not mere humans.  

They are on this pedestal which most of us can only aspire to reach. I'm not saying this out of lack of self confidence, but I like to believe heroes are just that—Heroes.

Larger than life. Super human. Better and more empowered than mortals like us. They achieve everything they set their eyes on and personify beauty and confidence. 

We can see them, enjoy them, hopefully get inspired by them, and try to embody the values they possess in abundance.

So how can they crumble like the rest of us?

Although the idea of a fallen hero is so romantic and tragic at the same time, this drama only spelled gloom for me.

Isn’t it incredible how sports can take you to extremities of emotion so effortlessly? We are euphoric one week and in the throes of desperation in the next.

And what’s strange is that I knew perfectly well I DIDN'T have to watch these videos, but that didn’t stop me.

It felt as much as a part of my karma as theirs. It almost felt like something I had to do to be part of their journey. To go through what they have been through.

If I have been part of the calm seas, I must be prepared for the storm.

But preparing yourself doesn’t make it any easier, does it?