Having recently turned 30, I have become obsessed with trying to remember important events in my life. My obsession with my age started with the realization that Sachin Tendulkar was probably nearing retirement (maybe he will, maybe he won't, but back when he was injured, it seemed like it would happen). Sachin Tendulkar is older than I am. Now he's old and has tennis elbow and his career may be getting over, though he did score a fine knock against Pakistan. Which means I'm old, too.
When I was 15, I went to a school function where Sachin Tendulkar was the chief guest. He still hadn't got his India cap, but was fresh off a good debut in the Ranji trophy, and tales of his monumental stand with Vinod Kambli for Shardashram were still in circulation. Sachin wouldn't remember me -- there were many feet (of people as well as distance) separating us. He was up on stage with Sharad Pawar (who was then the chief minister), and I was sitting cross-legged in the audience. But I Was There.
In the fall of 1994, around 9:00 am in the fall semester at IIT Bombay, I was at the coffee shack. The fella there said, "We are starting to sell tomato soup from today, would you like to buy some?" I bought some. But nobody recorded it for posterity. But I Was First.
That's about it, really. Depressing, innit? Some people would write, "I was the youngest winner of the Wimbledon," or "I earned a PhD at sixteen," and all I've got is tomato soup. Possibly Tendulkar.
Maybe I've forgotten it all, now that I'm 30. Maybe I should go for sentimental and record the birth of my daughter and my wedding as significant -- but practically everybody does that. Does a prize for group singing in class 7 (section D) count? What about being captain, Red House, for classes 6-7, and possibly school captain if I hadn't skipped the ceremony because they didn't give me advance warning?