01 December, 2012

"To decorate the ending with beauty"

Here's another Japanese idiom.

"Yuushuu no Bi o Kazaru"


This one means to achieve something great just before the end [of one's career].

I'm thinking of this one particularly as we follow the cricket this weekend. The South African team is touring Australia. 

The teams are playing their third five-day match at present. It hasn't been a terribly successful tour so far. Neither team has won a match yet: two draws. For people who don't understand cricket, it seems strange for two teams of 12 people to play each other for five days and not have a result, but that is one of the idiosyncrasies of the game that I'm certainly not going to be able to explain in a short blog post.

In international team sports, there are always other smaller dramas going on on the sidelines. At the moment, Australians are watching the former captain of the Australian team. He's had a long and lustrous career. His perseverance is admirable: he declined to quit playing for his country even after he lost the captains hat. However, most people now probably feel he's persevered too long. 

He's made appalling scores this season. And now he's decided to retire after this current match. It would be nice to see him finish his career with something great, rather than dribble into obscurity. He's had one chance to bat this match, and failed to make any significant runs. That gives him one more chance.

Can you think of a time when you really hoped someone would be able to "decorate the ending with beauty"?

Sourced from 101 Japanese Idioms, by Michael L. Maynard and Senko K. Maynard.

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