Day of Reckoning

Arsenal have the biggest game of their history tomorrow. It couldn’t come at a worse time – injuried plagued and shorn of confidence. Out of the domestic trophy hunt and languishing near mid-table they go to Madrid to face the biggest team in the world.

Why does sport have such enormous pull on us? So much misery and elation over a game – even if it the ‘Beautiful Game’ as Pele so memorably called it. It’s at once amusing and enraging to read the ‘pundits’ (what an outrageously bad use for that fine Indian word?) who have written our obituary. A beautiful new stadium and all this careful accumulation of precocious talent. Are Arsenal finished? Destined to spend years in the football hinterland overshadowed by Tottenham Hotspur? No effing way.

I’ve felt pretty miserable lately (and not just because of my football team – not everything is about Arsenal). I feel stretched (no not in the ‘asana’ sense’ – though I been pretty good and constant on that front). I feel tired and jaded. I usually wobble through January and February – but this year feels particularly hard. To be fair. it’s not just the weather. Then what is it? Well it’s everything. Why can’t it all stop just for 5 days. I’m waiting for Spring or maybe early Summer. When my wife has gone to visit her parents in London with the girls, I’m going to steal away with a canoe, a few incidentals and my mat to Algonquin. But I really shouldn’t wait – I need to invest in a parkah or get myself a new snowboard and start making the best of this fine northern climate of ours.

What was it that Bilbo said? Something about ‘too little butter scraped over too much bread’ or some such. That’s how I feel.

Oh yeah and don’t our girls rock? An aggregate score of 42-2 on the way to Gold. That is just amazing. Too bad we didn’t get Team USA in the final.

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