The Albert Pinto Syndrome
by Vimala Ramu
(Bangalore, Karnataka, India)
A few years back when the parallel cinema with its stalwarts Naseeruddin Shaw, Smita Patil, Shabana Azmi and others was at its peak, there came a movie called
Albert Pinto ko gussa kyon aata hai?
(Why does Albert Pinto get angry? I had not seen the movie. But I am now confronted with a similar question at home and am trying to get at the bottom of it.
Why (or When) does my husband get angry?
Ours is a happy contented middle class family. We as a couple are fairly well compatible. Our children are well educated, well employed and well married with good children of their own. Our old age needs are well looked after by our generous Indian government. We do not have any outstanding car or house loans. Our medical bills are paid by ECHS (Employees Contributory Health Scheme)
Added to all this, my husband is a very jovial man. His irrepressible wit keeps bubbling out regularly keeping everyone, including me in splits. He is loved by old and young alike. The atmosphere in our house normally is not one of passive placidity but one of positive happy energy.
Such being the case, it seems strange that my husband falls into spells of serious, tense, morose mood once in a while (Jekyll?) when I can see repressed anger in his eyes. At such times, glued to the TV set he becomes unusually reticent. Even if he were to talk to me, it would be to snarl at me and criticize me for what I did or did not do.
What is the cause of these menacing overt and covert spells of anger? Ramu saab ko gussa kyon aata hai?
Well, my dear readers, I shall not keep you in suspense any more.
It is the performance of our Indian cricket team that metamorphoses a habitually happy man into a smouldering volcano.
Tell me, why do our bowlers throw short balls and full tosses when they know fully well that their opponents are going to take advantage of them? Why can’t our fielders field like the fielders of the rest of the world? Their stupid butter fingers keep dropping the ball even in the easiest of the catches. Why do our batsmen ‘judge’ the balls even in one dayers? Why do they always take one ‘run’ less even if the ball is far off? Why is their run rate always so dismally poor? Why don’t they sack the oldies who are past their prime? …and so it goes on.
One day, I decided to leave my ‘sullenness incarnate’ husband to his TV watching as our team seemed to be ‘snatching defeat from the jaws of victory’ and take my siesta. But wonder of wonders, when I woke up the TV was off. My husband looked calm, placid and even happy. I asked him, ‘Did the rain stop the game’? He replied, ‘No, India managed to score equal and draw the game.’
I seriously feel that our cricket players should be more careful and responsible knowing that they are accountable to the moods and hence the health of the senior citizens of India. ****