Since images of the game from North America called football that’s played by clutching the footlong seed-shaped ‘ball’ in your hands aren’t beamed to tubes this side of the equator, online sources of information would have me believe that the motley bunch from the windy city blanked the green and gold packers (26-0). with number 4 as their QB! in Lambeau Field (Packer stronghold in the heart of Green Bay)! Holy mother of ###!
A team that had trouble getting on the board did that to a team that had for all of the last decade, beat them with disdain! Something’s not right with the world! Brett Favre (the #4) suffered his first shutout in his decade long career. (This is the guy that appears in ‘There’s something about Mary’ right at the very end as Miss Diaz’s long lost love).
Ok, for some perspective, imagine Kenya coming to India, beating India in the Chinnaswamy with jammy at the helm…yeah…its like that…except unlikelier
The throwback to Monday night primetime sports television reminds me what a seamlessl marriage entertainment and professional sports have in the US. There are mainly three major sports with varying popularity depending on the state you’re in; Basketball, Baseball and Football. The season for each scheduled so they clash with the other. In fact, one starts up just when the other reaches its ‘World Championship’ climax. The duration and formats tuned to perfection to last just long enough to hold the user’s attention with the right number of commercial breaks (mainly to give you a chance to do precisely two things: take a restroom break, refill on beer + assorted high-carb deep-fried snacks) The networks have programmed the average american so well, that it was discussed in consumer behaviour class how the water levels in any given city tank show a step-function decrease, each coinciding with commercial breaks in the middle of a game. Of course…not the best news for the companies pumping in millions to buy those ad-spots. If you happen to be at one of these games, there’s freebie give-aways, lucky seat no. draws and aaah…the cheerleaders.
Compare that to the experience of watching the likes of Mohinder Amarnath and Maninder Singh babble away about “aur ye shaandar shaat…cccchar run!” interspersed with vajradanti ads that ensure you return to live coverage to see one team celebrating, what, you can catch that in the papers the next day. Of course, then there’s the pre-game shows with Mandira Bedi and more nauseating nonsense. But then you decide to catch the action yourself and you’re faced with queues lasting 3-4 hours as they frisk you for that safety pin that you might use to hold the stadium full of 40,000 people hostage. Not to mention large uncovered sections of concrete that serve as seats for the majority.
The difference simply lies in power of the ‘supplier’ versus that of the ‘buyer’. Like the guest speaker in Advertising class said “Am sure all cricket-lovers hated the world-cup coverage, but we knew you had to come to us, we’re a monopoly”. If abc started showing ’51 ways to bliss with origami’ before a football game, the people would just load their 4X4s and go camping…