Friday 22 May 2009

Mad Dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun .. our English take on life ..

Dear Mr Postman .. isn't it wonderful .. we're into those lazy hazy days of summer .. when we can spend the day with friends - picnicking or bar-b-queing perhaps? with a pint of beer, soft drink or a glass of wine, lolling in the sun watching the clouds in the soft blue sky, listening to the birds sing and insects buzz .. with the thunder of men pounding the turf, swaggering as they make a catch, or hit a four or even a six .. the odd phrase or word 'catch', 'now', 'how about that?' ... floating across the field .. the kids playing outside the boundary ropes .. everyone basking in the warmth of the summer, while a gentle banter pervades occasionally permeating ones own subsconscious, when necessary ... blissful days -

W G Grace "taking guard" in 1883. His pads and bat look very
similar to those used today. The gloves have evolved somewhat. Many modern
players utilise more defensive equipment than was available to Grace, notably
helmets and arm guards.

My father was very keen on cricket .. possibly the beer too! .. and we loved our days being at cricket games with nothing to fill our time .. but listen to bat and ball (willow and leather) and play with our friends at the boundary's edge, or read spread eagled on our rugs, or just ... being ... gosh those were the days ...

Cricket the game that starts at 11.30 am going through til 6.30 pm or so and lasts for 5 days - well that is the Test Game .. is that a test? Now we have 20 20 a limited over one day game .. and variations on a theme .. and the pub game played out on the local village green .. we're lucky in England to have so many of these where the village grew up around the common land.

Have I lost you already .. ? Oh well .. wait til you've read the next few paragraphs and then .. I await your comments!
Melbourne, Australia - a limited overs match

To give you a little background before the incredibly enlightening explanation of 'how to play cricket' .. Cricket probably comes from old english cric, cryec, for a staff or stick. Cricket probably seamlessly transitioned from the older simpler games of club-ball, stool ball (a Sussex game revived and played today), or rounders .. played with a stick, ball and/or a stool .. these probably morphed into the American baseball .. but quite honestly cricket is enough for today!!

Back in 1598 (good thing we kept records!) John Derrick stated that as a boy at school in Guildford (being then aged 59) "hee and several of his fellowes did runne and play there at Crickett and other plaies"; Hambledon Cricket Club in Hampshire used to play matches against Dartford in Kent .. but Hambledon's home ground of Broad HalfPenny Down laid the foundations for the game's future, before its move to London and the establishment in 1787 of the Marylebone Cricket Club, as the governing body, with its present Lord's Cricket Ground opening in 1814.

"It's not cricket" is an old saying, which means .. It's not done in a fair and sportsmanlike way - we could do with more of this today ..
A bowler bowling to a batsman. The paler strip is the cricket pitch. The two sets of three wooden stumps on the pitch are the wickets. The two
white lines are the creases.
Here's how you play this game .....!!??!!

I think it starts "The side that go out are in..."
It's called:-
CRICKET: AS EXPLAINED TO A FOREIGNER... please read very carefully?!

You have two sides, one out in the field and one in. Each man that's in the side that's in goes out, and when he's out he comes in and the next man goes in until he's out. When they are all out, the side that's out comes in and the side that's been in goes out and tries to get those coming in, out. Sometimes you get men still in and not out.

When a man goes out to go in, the men who are out try to get him out, and when he is out he goes in and the next man in goes out and goes in. There are two men called umpires who stay out all the time and they decide when the men who are in are out. When both sides have been in and all the men have been out, and both sides have been out twice after all the men have been in, including those who are not out, that is the end of the game.

Simple! Need a drink? or a sit down? ... well you could have a read from the Wikepedia site on cricket .. and see more .. and perhaps move into chains, pitches, stumps, fields .. No? - oh I'm surprised!

Perhaps the pretty picture that I couldn't resist .. explains the batsmens' strokes ..

and this is our National Game! We do definitely go out in the midday sun .. but not with mad dogs .. just with sunstroke and a muddled head .. cutting, driving, pulling, leg glancing with a stick and a bit of leather .. it takes all sorts??!!

Thank you Mr Postman for delivering this letter .. I think my mother will understand and have a laugh and smile .. who else other than us English .. could possibly get our heads round it & we've needed over 400 years to master it and in that time to spread our mad and crazy games around the world .. oh well - good, you also enjoy the day lazing around onthe grass .. me too ..
Hilary Melton-Butcher
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Peter Baca said...

Dear Hilary,

Quite interesting sport! It is amazing that some of games last as long as they do!

I am a soccer man myself having coached for twelve years. Is cricket the most popular sport in Enland?

Thank you for your enlightening post!

Pete Baca
The Car Enthusiast Online

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Pete ... thanks .. as you say it's surprising how long things have been around, stayed and developed over the years. Oh yes -I'd forgotten you play soccer .. & you're right soccer is meant to be the most popular .. however I've heard that fishing is more populous and hence therefore the most popular.

Thanks for being enlightened by that strange explanation .. I love it - it appears on tea towels as a fun description ..

Hilary Melton-Butcher
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Marketing Unscrambled, Home edition said...

Hilary, thank you for that post. The games that people play. It can help people develop team spirit and other things that help in life and the best way to grow.
Dan and Deanna "Marketing Unscrambled"

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Dan & Deanna .. if you got to grips with this = well done!! As you say playing sport in a team does help the communication and relationship side of life ..and can lead to other things eg admin, running the club, being captain (a leader) etc ..

Thanks for posting -
Hilary Melton-Butcher
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