4 Bases Are Passé – Get Ready for the 11 Wickets of Love

Indians, and I mean, anyone with a brain, knows that cricket is better than baseball. It’s not really a debate. For someone who understands cricket, baseball is just too simple. Cricket is to baseball what chess is to ludo.

So why then are the Four Bases of Relationships still based on baseball? What’s this US cultural hegemony? No, no, this will not do anymore. Makes no sense, after all! Since when have relationships been so simple? There have to be more bases – we Indians (actually most of the world) have far more complex relationships, and the stages to these relationships can not adequately be covered by just 4 bases.

We need 11. And not bases. 11 wickets.

And it’s more poetic than just kiss-touch-downstairs-alltheway. I can’t believe the world still uses that prehistoric shit. No, we are more sophisticated. A change is necessary.

From now on, when we are asking a friend, we will not say “Which base.” We will say “How many wickets down?”

[I’m a guy, so I’m going to write this from that perspective. This should all be very gender reversible.]

1. First Wicket: I Spy, or THE OPENER:

When he first sees her. His heart stops, his mind goes “Oye hoye. By God.”

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2. Second Wicket: Two to Tango, or BAD SHOT SELECTION:

Next time he steals a glance, she looks at him too. A moment, a pause. He’s imagining children. She’s … disgusted. But only until –

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3. Third Wicket: Stuttering First Words, or GETS THE BREAKTHROUGH:

He walks up, pulls up his pants, and says – “Um, ahem. Haha. Er – hello. Shit. Bye.” And runs off. She – GIGGLES. Breakthrough!

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4. Fourth Wicket:  Hand Shake (literally), or STRAIGHT DRIVE:

Three wickets down. Need to send in the best man you have, so we still have a chance. So, he brings out his A Game. He walks up, pulls up his pants, and says – “Um, ahem. Haha – “. But she cuts him off, and offers her hand – they shake. BOOM. What a shot. Races away to the boundary. “Anjali.” “Rahul.”

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5. Fifth Wicket: Let’s Walk Together, or GOOGLY:

They meet after work and sort of… walk around. No hand shake this time, she was holding her purse/books/bag/cricket bat. But they talk. They share. They smile awkwardly, look for nice things to say to each other. At some point he says “You are very beautiful.” At some point. Tentative, very tentative. This is confusing stuff. Very complicated. Like a googly.

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6. Sixth Wicket: Dinner, or the NIGHT WATCHMAN: 

No, assholes. It doesn’t end with them in each others’ beds. This is civilized courtship. They just  – imagine it. Over and over. Throughout a nice meal at a crowded place. Because although she still wants to continue batting in this innings, it’s getting darker and darker. No one knows exactly what the other wants. So, play safe – nightwatchman. If he survives, maybe she’ll send in the top order next morning. Otherwise, innings declared.

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7. Seventh Wicket: Lunch, or the MIDDLE OVERS: 

Yes. Lunch. Because that means they’ve especially gone to some trouble and taken out special time for each other. This means they are prepared to face the slow overs together. A partnership builds. When they were leaving though, they sort of awkwardly – hug? Was that a hug? Yeah, I guess it could qualify.

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8. Eighth Wicket: Movie with Her Friends, or the ALL ROUNDER: 

She was just… you know, going out with her sahelis (girl friends). So she asked if you want to come. No no, it’s not an interview. It’s just a movie. Ya, ya, we’ll sit together. Hint hint. And he brings out his all round best performance, and impresses EVERYONE.

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9. Ninth Wicket: Big Fight, or the FINISHER:

It’s raining yorkers and bouncers. This is a nerve racking time. One mishit, and it’s all over. But this big fight is a sign of real emotional connection (unless the fight is porn related, in which case, all bets are off.) That this team will keep fighting till the end, even when it’s raining yorkers and bouncers.

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10. Tenth Wicket: I’m Here For You, or the TAILENDER:

He’s in trouble, and she runs to his rescue. Like that unexpected six from a tailender. She holds him in her arms, comforts him. And then – they might kiss. Or not, depending on their opinion on that sort of tongue nonsense. And there might be all the ‘bases’ of baseball, or none at all. But this is the key step, regardless. He either goes back fully comforted, if you get my meaning, or very comforted and … sort of on edge though he can’t explain it.

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11. Eleventh Wicket: Parents, or ALL OUT

 

The first meeting is set. He’s about to meet them. It’s nerve racking, with lots of “No, no I’m not nervous yaar.” He walks up to the door, knocks. Waits. The door opens – and –

The target has been set (either marraige, or some sort of live in relationship or whatever).

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But this now requires the parents to get involved, so we move into th CHASE – The Second Innings. Another 11 wickets? Perhaps.

This post is a work in progress. We, as a collective, thinking society, should further brainstorm and refine these wickets. Anyway, IPL now. Bye.

Coming soon: Webster’s Cricket Courtship Lexicon.

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