Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 11/28/2022
There are some sports that I cannot fathom. In Australia they play netball (restricted to women), which is like basketball without a backboard (which is like a bagel without cream cheese) and has a whistle blown for a foul every seven seconds. It’s excruciating. Women deserve better. We all deserve better!Women’s field hockey is similarly incomprehensible, with continual fouls and semicircles of players contesting for the next play somewhat like a pack of wolves surrounding a kill. Suffice it to say that it put my German Shepherd/Siberian Husky mix—Trotsky, a dog forever causing trouble—into a sound sleep on the hillside.
Cricket is a game played by people in sweaters, sometimes pausing for tea. There are “all outs,” “innings,” “chances,” “overs,” and so forth, and the game can go on for days. My suspicion is that most of these guys simply don’t want to go home. Oh, yeah: There are wickets.
We’re in the midst of the World Cup and soccer (as in England vs. the US) can end in a 0-0 tie. They call it “nil,” I believe, but I call it a snooze. American football, which can take over three hours, actually has about 38 minutes of action. But you can read between plays, during times out (“timeouts” is grammatically incorrect) and I’ve finished great books while enjoying the game. You don’t dare read during a soccer match because that might be the one nanosecond of an instant where someone actually scores! No wonder a soccer goal is so exciting, it happens less than full eclipses. (It would take 15 seconds to watch a soccer match highlight reel, and that would include the 27 Yellow Cards.)
I will mention here the great acting that goes on among soccer players who dive and bend and hold various body parts attempting to draw a foul call. They put Al Pacino to shame.
Rugby is another head-scratcher. It’s a bunch of beefy guys going at each other with great rigor and relish wherein scoring seems secondary (or even tertiary). All the big plays rely on tossing the ball outward to mates streaming down the field on the flanks. I want to yell at the defense, “They’re going to throw it outside to the next guy, for the love of God. Can’t you see that??!!”
Of course we now live in a world where there is an international scandal about cheating in chess championships. King’s pawn to off the board.
I don’t want to be merely negative, I do think women’s beach volleyball is an incredible sport. And I do plan to learn the rules at some point.
(Thanks for letting me kid you a bit, we all love our games, and I thought I’d get your blood racing. I’m trusting you’re all good sports. And, personally, I’ve always thought that Australian Rules is the most challenging and exciting game in the world.)
When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. —Hunter S. Thompson
People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball. I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring. —Rogers Hornsby
I went to a fight the other night, and a hockey game broke out. —Rodney Dangerfield
Some people are born on third base and go through life thinking they hit a triple. —Barry Switzer