“So, what are you doing these days?”
People ask me all the time. I believe they do it because of some kind of ancient protocol of civility. Everyone who should know, knows very well that I am not doing much, at least in the professional terms. How much time can one spend looking out for jobs, especially when you don’t even know what kind of job you want. So I have come to spend most of my waking hours engaged in some kind of activity. I was very big on fitness for some time, but then the monsoon started. It’s not an excuse or anything, but its just too tedious to work out when it’s raining. So on my latest visit to home, I thought of playing pool on a whim.
I have flirted with pool before, and I was never too good at it. Most of the times, I just hit the ball and watch it randomly hitting something. There have been occasions when I have not potted the ball that was screaming to be potted. So I thought, “hmm, here is a pointless pursuit of self improvement that will not count, why the hell not?”. So I have been playing pool for quite some time, with a zeal that I have never had before. First few days were a repeat of my earlier outings. Then someone had the bright idea of switching to snooker. Now, from a logical point of view, people should move from pool to snooker. Because, snooker is a larger table, with more elegant balls. It’s more difficult to hit a clean shot. However, when has something like that stopped me? Rather, I have observed that I tend to do better at things that are more difficult. Snooker was a whole different story though. Boy, we tanked for the first two days! We couldn’t even finish the frame. Then, as if someone had programmed it without us being any wiser, we started hitting the balls right, and even potted a few. This is so amazing, like a little miracle. I won’t say that I am any good at it, but I am much better than what I was.
It’s been a nice little activity for the past few weeks now, and I often indulge in it. It’s more enjoyable now, when we can actually have something like a competitive game. A couple of days back though, we went back to playing pool. It was more out of desperation, as the snooker table was not free. To our surprise, we were superb! We finished the game in a blink. That was interesting, really interesting. Apparently facing a more difficult challenge had improved our skills to an extent that pool seemed really really easy. The next day however, was disappointing, as we just couldn’t finish the game as quickly as we thought we could. Kind of like life I guess. You are good at something, but you still can’t take it for granted. No matter how many times you have hit the last ball with perfection, you still need to concentrate, buckle up, and work at it.
I think that’s what makes life interesting too. You may have seen the game, and you know how the balls roll if you have a little experience. You know where to hit, how to slice, and how to pot, and yet you can never guarantee potting a ball, or hitting the right shot. Because, each frame is different, every time you need to start from scratch. It’s fun though, learning something from scratch, building up skills. As far as I am concerned, I don’t know how long this love for snooker /pool will last, but I am definitely having a ball right now. 😛