It is unusually close to the batsmen. It is a dangerous, yet a rewarding position. It gives new players a chance to learn the game, the nimble ones a chance to display their fielding prowess, and the wily ones a chance to show-off their “running-someone-out” smartness. But sadly it gives the careless, inattentive ones, a chance to get injured, or sometimes just die. No wonder they call it the silly point.
Over the years this spot has developed another utility beyond the realms of fielding. The unstructured and sometimes insensible rise of sledging or Mental Disintegration (as Steven Waugh famously honey-coated the practice) in Cricket has provided it more significance on field than ever before, for it is the only position apart from the bowler who can constantly throw a gaze at the batsman. Learning has been replaced with a know-it-all attitude, nimbleness has been verbalized, and wiliness is now wrapped with arrogance.
What has stayed the same is the fear. Fear of losing your senses for a moment. Fear of getting hit by the thread-infused leather. Fear of injury. Fear of death. Fear of batsman.
The best silly point fielders are those who overcome fear, for whom the dismissal is more important than the reactionary jump, the gaze more important than showing the back.
And then there is the stupid thing called life, full of conversations, good ones, bad ones, and those silly ones. In all our conversations we are either trying to learn something about someone, discuss shared interests, evoke a set of emotions, or debate with rationality and mutual respect. On certain occasions the conversations do not go the right way, leading to confusion, chaos, and ultimately a lot of pain.
Over the years we have changed and so have our conversations. We are trying too hard to talk at times, but too little to connect with others. Changing technology has increased the volume of our conversations, but its value is questionable. Changing social structures and behavioural patterns has led to people vigorously competing for attention. Conversations are being used as tools to please people, to judge them, and many a times to inflict insult or to demean them. Learning has been replaced with a know-it-all attitude, rationality with trivial emotions, and respect with arrogance.
What has stayed the same is the fear. Fear of losing your senses during an important conversation. Fear of getting hit by a verbal blow. Fear of insult. Fear of conflict. Fear of losing a friend, or a loved one.
The best of the conversations are had without any fear and inhibitions in mind, where measured responses take precedence over maintaining an image, and conclusion is more important than outcome.
Never be afraid of making an honest point which you truly believe in. In life, as in Cricket, even a Silly Point is not a bad idea.
If you liked the post, try reading this one: Well left