Dear Diary

Bad at good sportsmanship

I am such a sore loser. Few things make me feel worse than not winning. It’s so depressing to be on the losing side, even if you were on a winning team. But that’s the way of the world, no? You win some, you lose some. And if you’re a good sportsman, you’re supposed to accept defeat with grace and move on to play another day. All that is easier said than done. Say you’re driving to some place, minding your own business and doing your own thing. The road ahead is clear, save for a few handcarts and several hundred thousand ‘bodabodas’.

Suddenly, a ‘bajaji’ hurls itself onto the road, managing to lodge itself right smack in the middle of your path. You slow down to accommodate the shameless intruder. As you’re preparing to overtake, some clever driver on the service road takes advantage of your diminished speed to swerve onto the road, just like the ‘bajaji’ had done, but perhaps with a little more finesse.

The driver in his white something or the other, positions himself just ahead of his road-hoarding partner and together, they conspire to maintain an average speed of 50KPH. This leaves you with no option but to overtake. Indicator on, you speed up and swing to the left, but just as you’re about to steer clear of the ‘bajaji’ you run into an enormous bump. So you slow down and manage – barely – to squeeze in between the three-wheeler and his ‘white something or the other’ friend.

Undeterred, you indicate again, swing to the left and speed up, more determined than ever to free yourself of the tortoise ahead of you. You’re neck and neck with the man when he steps on the gas. You accelerate. He accelerates.

You can see another bump up ahead. In the distance, a ‘dala dala’ is making its way towards you. And you’re on the wrong side of the road. You accelerate again. The idiot to your right does the same. It feels like you’re on the track and its Formula One.

Seconds later, you reach the monster bump and slam on the breaks, thinking Mr White Something or Other will do the same. But he doesn’t. He catapults over the bump and speeds off into the horizon, leaving you inhaling his exhaust fumes. You find yourself squeezing in ahead of the very same ‘bajaji’ as you swerve to avoid the ‘daladala’. Meanwhile, the driver you were trying to overtake is off and away, probably laughing quietly to himself.

You could have died but all you can think about is that you could have won. But you lost. Ugh! You’ll get him the next time, you say to yourself, the game’s on now.