Abhinav Bindra Differs On Gold
What he said:
I once got yak milk from China because I was told it enhances concentration. It didn’t. I attached electrodes to my head to view the activity in my brain when I shot well. I lasered off my love handles. Let’s be clear: We’re not you. We’re not better than you, or other athletes, just caught in lives mostly weirder than most.
Abhinav Bindra, India’s first ever gold medallist—at the 2008 Beijing Olympics—in an individual Olympic event recounts the myriad attempts at securing that little bit extra, that edge, that would separate him from his competitors—make him a better shooter.
Bindra’s autobiography, “A Shot At History”, is to be released on October 28, 2011.
The 260-page book, co-written with journalist and sports writer, Rohit Brijnath, is published by HarperCollins.
We have to be a little insane to do this, a trifle obsessive, almost as single-minded as shaven monks who sit for years meditating under trees in search of distant nirvana.
Of the fateful evening the day before he clinched his historic medal, Bindra says:
The mission, whose worth would be evaluated tomorrow…butterflies tango in the stomach.
The answer was a McDonalds meal and a long walk. I am too wired to sleep, but then I have already practiced going without sleep. I stand in my balcony at 3 am and look out into the dark nothingness, another athlete swallowing his fear in this dormitory of the strange and the gifted.
I felt the pressure of the Olympics, as if a nervous breakdown was imminent, and I carried it (a miniature bottle of Jack Daniels) with me. Now, on this sleepless night, I retrieve it from my toilet kit, I twist it open, empty it into my nervous stomach. As if it is an antidote to everything that assails me.
Bindra slept just an hour that night.
What he really meant:
“Obsession—-thy name is gold.”
What he definitely didn’t:
“The book’s merely yakkety-yakkety-yak.”