Deccan Chargers v Chennai Super Kings, IPL semi final match report

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Alex writes:

British Airways have given me the gift of time. First they offered me a flight 10 days after the one that was cancelled. Now, their phone line is so busy I am not even allowed to wait on hold.

What to do with this time? I decide to get a shave. I can get one at my hotel for 15 times the price of where I’d previously had one in a less-touristy part of town. Maybe it’ll be 15 times as good.

It is exactly the same.

The hotel has a calmer but less fun atmosphere. If there is one area where the hotel shave experience is superior, it is in the fact that the barber doesn’t have disconcertingly long nails on his left hand – the ‘arse hand’ for those that don’t know about these things.

After such an exhausting day, I fall asleep during Deccan Chargers’ run-chase. Fortunately, Brian phones to ask if he’s woken me up.

The next morning, I am still unwell enough to be discomfited, but not sufficiently sick to warrant calling a doctor.

British Airways are still too busy to let me wait on hold, so I busy myself growing more facial hair in order that I might have an activity for the next day.


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


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  1. Grow a beard.

    There are very few opportunities in life for a man to grow a beard without having all of his friends and acquaintances seeing the thing as a work in progress, and thus making him lose all respect. Being stuck in a hotel in India is a heaven-sent opportunity. By the time you get home your growth will be rich and luxurious, and you’ll be able to frighten the living daylights out of everybody who knows you, especially your mum.

    Honestly, I did it once, and I still cherish the memories of all my friends staring at me, desperately wanting to tell me that I looked utterly ridiculous, but being prevented from doing so by the shock.

  2. We’re not one of life’s frequent shavers to be honest, Bert.

    We’ve lost count of the number of times that people have said to us: “Are you growing a beard?”

    “No. No I’m not. I’m just really, really lazy and don’t like the sensation when you drink out of the tap without facial hair.”

    Besides, having a shave is one of the great Indian experiences. You get pampered and can even reluctantly accept a head massage without feeling like a total homo.

  3. Head massages! They are freaking awesome! Especially when the barber uses Navratna Oil 😀

  4. Have you ridden an elephant yet? Or nearly had an accident in a cab due to a cow in the middle of the road?

  5. Anil Kumble just won a ‘best breakthrough performance’. That ipl jury sure can spot a new talent when they see one.

  6. You don’t need to actually have the shave in order to get the Indian barber experience. Why don’t you go in and simply ask the barber to gently stroke your face for ten minutes? If he is reluctant, tell him that you think his hands are beautiful and smooth, and you can’t think of anything nicer than having them caressing your cheeks.

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