But Not is a game I had written about in an earlier post. I should probably change the name of that game to Butt Not, taking a Broader perspective into consideration. Yes, I am referring to Ijaz Butt’s remarks when Chris Board expressed his shock openly. Simon Taufel has corroborated Broad’s statements and even Dominic Cork, after his retirement is finally beginning to kick ass, err Butt by bowling outswingers at some party in Lahore! Uncorking Cork has been a pleasure for the media 😉
The planet has now witnessed the terror videos and it is obvious that terrorism is gaining more momentum than ever before. But what is more disturbing is the denial mode from officials – appalling to say the least. What has happened in Pakistan is straight out of a movie script. I would have laughed if some movie showed terrorists around a bus carrying an international cricket team. Grenades, rocket launchers and indiscriminate firing on Sri Lankan cricketers!! They didn’t even beat Pakistan to win the World Cup in 96 at Pakistan – so no question of cricket crazy fans going berserk there. Like Slumdog Millionaire that connected different sensitive topics, this script would have connected terrorism, cricket, celebrities, cops and action masala. Alas, such a script is not confined to imagination anymore.
We can easily appreciate the fact that there are 2 types of people – Terrorists and Non-terrorists. However, if we draw a Venn Diagram, it does not look as if the 2 types are mutually independent and exclusive.
Murali’s statements and even earlier statements on actors, state and non-state, make the situation more and more complex. Like Younis Khan, millions of kids across India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka pick up their cricketing gear so that one day they can become like their idols. Exceptions like me end up playing cricket on their laptops 🙂 This incident in Pakistan has made certain that no team is going to visit Pakistan in the near future. Confidence in touring India has also been shaken and I am not sure if any team would be willing to tour India or Sri Lanka as well. The England team showed courage and came back to India after the blasts. But with the future looking very sad, English courage could be an example from history, and rightly so!
Will Cricket die a slow and painful death in Pakistan or India or Sri Lanka? If Pakistan continues to focus on denial management instead of doing something about this menace, this may well become a true scenario sooner than later in Pak soil. India has bounced back from terrorist attacks and the common man’s circumstances have ensured that he is like an ant following pheromones. Of late, the pheromones are becoming blood stained thanks to Kasab’s global colleagues. Hmm … enough cribbed!
From a solution to this problem perspective, I encourage online / virtual world usage even further. There is a physical world affected badly and there is a virtual world. The virtual world can be protected further and negative impact of terrorism can be kept to a minimum there. So let us spend more time there instead of this real world, what say? Virtual stadiums with etickets to watch online cricket matches will be the next phase of sports. It will not be easy to excel in computer games when you will see so much of competition. It will need hours of practice, strategy making and all the characteristics that make a good sportsman like strong will power, patience, dedication etc. For fitness purposes, use gyms in your home. Run on treadmills at various inclines, velocities and do what not with big balloons or balls to build abs and muscles at the right places within the right time. Market for all those body building products catering to home exercisers will now grow bigger.
Coming back to the point, even if terrorists can disrupt the online game, at least lives will not be lost. The players can log in from different parts of the globe and need not be served in a platter, err … bus to LeT the terrorists attack them. Global tournaments, World Cup, T20 etc can all be carried out without any threat.
Let us now move to another popular sport linked to cricket – politics. Political rallies attract crowds and hence are terrorist targets – so shift to virtual world. Voting must be online. Imagine, a rural India where each villager has the tools to participate in a virtual conference, attend a meeting, vote just by the click of a button sitting next to his cow, near a well, drawing a heavy smoke from his hookah. Video conferencing is still nascent when it comes to user experience but we know that Cisco etc are creating products that attempt to make the experience as ‘real’ as possible. With this kind of a market available, infrastructure development – economies of scale advantages … Wow, see, how terrorists are going to contribute! Stop forcing people to go for work – enable everybody to work from home. That way, CST station will be much less crowded, so it will be easier for policemen and other law enforcing agencies to protect the common man. The shift from earth to virtual world is the only way to reduce risk of getting hit by a random bullet shot by a maniac. Just like we are surrounded by all kinds of invisible signals – telephone signal waves, radio signals of infinite radio stations, all kinds of electromagnetic waves, we are also surrounded by the waves of likelihood of getting shot. If some of the bullets had travelled 2 inches away from their original paths or a grenade had gone off, some of cricket’s heroes would have been gone. Would the Butt Not game have ended then? Maybe not, because the players had refused to wear bullet proof dresses designed by Edna Mode, the tailor from The Incredibles!
Anyways, I am off to practice short pitched bowling against e-Shoaib Akthar on my computer and improve my hand eye coordination. I keep pressing the shift key instead of control and have to change my stance if I have to become captain of the future Online Indian cricket team! Bye for now.