What Jim has learned today

I learned that this past week Pakistan has won the 2017 World Championship in cricket by defeating India. Congratulations Pakistan. But I have one question … what the heck is cricket? Having asked this question, I seek enlightenment from Uncle Google. This is what I have learned. Even though in cricket there are things like bats and balls, innings and outs just like baseball, cricket is not anything like baseball. There is one major difference … unlike baseball, cricket is not boring. I can’t watch a baseball game. I find it excruciating waiting for something to happen. In baseball, after nine eternities called innings, scores like 3-0 or 1-2 or even 1-0 are common. In this year’s world cricket championship, Pakistan trounced India by 180 runs. Now, that’s action. I have heard it said that the reason American football became so popular on television is because it lends itself to advertising. There is a pause between every play and during that pause viewers can be entertained by things like puppymonkeybabies, thereby making football a thing easily capitalized while dividing up the required attention span into manageable increments. This is a major reason soccer will never achieve the same status as football in the United States. In soccer, there is a solid 45 minutes of uninterrupted play before there is a pause allowing for advertising. No advertising opportunity means no Monday Night Soccer. One game of cricket can last six hours per day for as long as five days … one game! Imagine, five whole days of puppymonkeybabies, an advertisers dream. One may think such prospects for monetizing a game would make cricket more prevalent here in the United States. What prevents the game of cricket from becoming popular in the U.S. is that it’s so alien to our senses. There are things like overs, bowlers, strikers, wickets, stumps and bails, run outs, the pitch is a geographic location on the field rather than a ball thrown, there are popping creases, bowling creases and batting creases, LBWs and the referees dress like Col. Sanders in a Panama hat and a lab coat … all sorts of weird things. After spending the past 23 minutes in researching the game, I’ve come to believe, in spite of all the weirdness of the game of cricket, it could possibly become popular here in the U.S … because it is not boring. Watch out Major League Baseball. In cricket … you get 10 outs. This is all I have learned today.

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James Wares is retired and resides in Marshalltown. He can be reached at whatjimhaslearnedtoday@yahoo.com