Monday, September 10, 2007

Choices, choices, choices - mimitig

Although it has been a pretty wretched summer weather-wise, the last few months have been rich in terms of sport.

The weekend just gone was a case in point. On Saturday England’s cricketers were playing a crucial One-day game against India – effectively a final in a seven match series which was poised at three-all. Federer was on show in New York. Football had an important game for Euro 2008 qualifying as England played Israel. The rugby World Cup kicked off. The men in lycra were madly pedalling through Spain in La Veulta and on Sunday another bunch of cycling lads set off on the Tour of Britain.

Additionally motorsport was in full flood with Formula One at Monza, World Superbikes were doing their stuff at what I still think of as the Lausitzring (Eurospeedway – what’s that all about?), and Scotland’s own Dario Franchitti was evoking memories of the great Jim Clark as he drove to win the IndyCar Championship in the USA. Oh and Asafa Powell, the Jamaican sprinter, was busy breaking a world record.

These are just the sports I try to follow, so goodness only knows what else was happening.

With the cricket Twenty20 World Cup about to get underway, I am beginning to wonder whether there comes a point where there is simply too much sport. Particularly when one actually wants to be out there on a fine early autumn day indulging in a bit of sporting activity oneself. It’s a terrible dilemma – do you take advantage of the dry times to nip out for a couple of hours cycling, or rush home from work to check out what your various teams or individuals are doing? The healthy option, of course, is to take the exercise, and think – oh I can catch up on the results at the end of the day. But catching up on results has none of the excitement of following an event live – be that on television, radio or through the magic medium that is the interweb. So time after time over the summer and now autumn, my cycle waits patiently in the hall, or is only taken for a quick trip along the coast for a couple of miles, as I choose to spend hour upon hour glued to digital or longwave radio, the telly and my computer, multi-tasking as I attempt to keep a grip on up to five different contests at once.

It has been suggested to me, when I moan about the fact that I have a backlog of sports pages and magazines to get through (I have scarcely read a book for months – not even for my Book Group!) that I limit my enthusiasms – concentrate on just one or two sports. But how can you do this? If you enjoy, just as example, the sight of 100 or so fit young men in lycra speeding along country roads in France, Ireland, Spain, or even England at the same time as enjoying fit young men in leather muscling whacking great motor bikes around tracks across the world, or even not-quite-so-fit chaps in white, or strange pyjama garb, wielding the willow and hurling the red or white ball around, how can you just stop watching?

You can’t, you see, it’s just too much choice and too much sport.

Damn, gotta go and check the end of the Middlesex v Derby match before pumping up the bike tyres – I think I have a window tomorrow for a quick zip along the cliffs before I immerse myself in the Twenty20 tournament, while keeping an eye on my Division Two county boys as they start the last few matches of the season.

71 comments:

tony said...

That's too true to be funny, Mimi. Fortunately, there are enough sports which leave me cold to give me some free time. But then there's this blogging thing...

munni said...

Not to mention the Women's World Cup which started today, anyone else following that?

gg said...

Munni -
you can't avoid it in Sweden, since they have a team which is heavily fancied.

I thought we had a storm the other day, but it was just the national collective intake of breath as Swedes
woke up to the fact that their girls were in a World Cup Final.

Ljungberg plays for the women's team, too.

DoctorShoot said...

Mimi
can I suggest the modern combination of bicycle and iPod... but no visuals of course or you might run over a duck!

munni said...

gg, Freddie's not nearly tough enough to play for the women't team, I'm afraid he'd get hurt.

bluedaddy said...

Munni, watched the highlights of Germany 11 Argentina 0. It was like the perfect advert and perfect anti-advert for the women's game. Germany were powerful, skilled, organised and could have had six more.
Argentina were...

offside said...

... pumas?

DoctorShoot said...

...hummers...

mimi said...

Doc: I used to cycle with an old-fashioned portable music device called a Walkman. Sadly the distractions made journeys hazardous!

MotM said...

Mimi - I feel your pain.

Apart from chipping away at a moderately successful career and demolishing any claims to 21st Century parenting, I have no problem keeping up with the sport at all.

munni said...

bd, the whole thing was a perfect advert for the women's game: you see what happens when you have (relative)funding, support, and an integrated training system? And you see what happens when you don't? The US are also a good example of this, while they looked competent and reasonably skilled, you can already see a measurable decline in standards since the US women's league became defunct.

mimi said...

Mark Cavendish is doing rather finely in the Tour of Britain. Bit of a no-brainer really, he's such a fine cyclist, but it's all bringing credibility back into the sport I love. This isn't a Pro-Tour competition, but it does matter.

bluedaddy said...

Good point munni.

What about an exercise bike surrounded by consoles and screens and speakers in your sport room mimi?
I bet Lord Ebren has a room like that (but he will also have gentleman servants and punkah wallahs and dancing girls, as befits a man of his stature and achievement).

By the way, I was reading some piece about Maradona that mentioned our favourite Guardian correspondent, but as they billed her as Marcela Moray Araujo, I was wondering if the Telegraph (it was a link ok!) had combined you and Marcela to form a sort of multi-sport, multi-lingual Superhack.

mimi said...

bluedad: I do like your idea of a multi-media sports room with bike.

Now how can I fund it?

DoctorShoot said...

Mimi
watched the Matildas against Kenya last night 4 - 1 to our women. Excellent fast paced game with loads of breaks and near misses...

you could try having a punt on them against Norway to start building your super gym piggy bank...

bluedaddy said...

Don't the SNP offer grants for this kind of thing mimi? Your physical health and mental wellbeing are at stake here.

offsideintahiti said...

BD,

the SNP have started drinking all the grant money yesterday at 10 pm.

I suspect there's not much of it left right now.

DoctorShoot said...

whoops
I think I meant Ghana.
well best to get on a more reliable tipster perhaps...

munni said...

Stupid question, but can someone please explain what twenty20 is, using words that someone who knows nothing about cricket will understand?

tonyellis said...

munni - I just asked that same question to a guy in the Pakistani supermarket next door! He told me it's one innings of 20 overs per team...

mimi said...

Twenty20: hum well. England invented it, and are now being shown up as not very good!

Two teams get 20 overs to hit as many runs as they can. Strange fielding restrictions apply for the first six overs (and there are six balls an over). Slower bowlers tend to do better than pure pace men (except the Australians).

Slog/sweep hitters often do better than pure quality players, but it's a fast and furious version of the cricks and has found great favour with the crowds. Also involves scantily clad ladies dancing on the boundary and much use of pop music - I'm quoting Geoffrey Boycott here!!

Hope that helps.

tony said...

20-20 is also nearly South Africa's score in each half against England. Anyone feel like like laughing at les bleus?

Thought not. How about this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjxFu_NXET4

mimi said...

Not checked your clip yet Tony but do I gather that England were hammered by the Saffers in the rugby?

mimi said...

Have checked the clip.
Rock chicks rule:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PMBDEN5H-MA&mode=related&search=

mimi said...

Of course I could have chosen this, but I think I've already linked this favourite
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mIsN2JHPds&mode=related&search=

tony said...

Ooooh thanks, mimi. Have you heard this?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nxBficNKirQ

mimi said...

Not yet cos Have I the Right to celebrate/lament 40 years since Joe Meek died?

We did a 30 year memory of Steven Biko on the other thread and of course he is far more important politically, but being a bit frivolous on a Friday night, and also realising the tragedy that was Joe's life, a bit of notice should be taken.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbhfWGdfePc

tony said...

Joe Meeks? I only remember Honey Lantree.

This is the first single I bought:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2gqgORX4_iA

mimi said...

while I check this, how about memories?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IFR-zg71Zso&mode=related&search=

mimi said...

The first 45 I bought was TRex Metal Guru. The first LP was Sticky Fingers - with the proper zipped cover!
But one of the big influences was this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2gqgORX4_iA

Strange in a way today - this week - this month. Joe Meek 40 year, Biko 30 years - Tony Wilson just gone. And for the life of me I can't remember when Ian Curtis died but given they are doing a film about him, it must be an anniversary.

tony said...

Er, sorry, mimi... didn't I just send you that one? That would really be too wierd...

mimi said...

tony: i must check my links but in the meantime, how about a bit of Shipbuilding?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6T9qp9XbRY

mimi said...

I did get my links mixed but this is the one for wrenching back memories
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IFR-zg71Zso&mode=related&search=

tony said...

mimi- thanks for those 2 links to rock follies - I'd forgotten about that series: loved it!

Also for shipbuilding. Dou you know the elvis costello version (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esjrHxpiet0)?

I met Robert Wyatt once, apropos de nada...

tony said...

ps - have you had a drink or 2 mimi?

mimi said...

A consolatory glass of chardonnay after England's capitulation to the Aussies.

How about this then?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r-BxLbMT2s4

tony said...

I'm consoling myself over something or other, too. Great sonf, don't they look young?
ok:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22eubaCUNJU

mimi said...

Oh so cool! I'll have to go looking for early Doors!

tony said...

while you're looking:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJ2a7LlAiqs

D'you think there's anyone else out there? Dead quiet on GU too. Has the world ended?

mimi said...

love this - haven't heard it for years. Where are the others you ask? Living lives, possibly?
Dunno. I got a bit distracted with Tom Lehrer. Always worth some fun:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fU2mwrxRQyA

mimi said...

Not that I'm suggesting any global disaster.

I do remember driving back into London one evening and finding no traffic - just nothing. Got the mini first onto Tower Bridge as it rose, and I wondered if there had been a disaster to the capital while I'd been away playing in Ely.

Strange.

tony said...

lives? Are they those things people are always telling me to get one of?

Love that last one. How about this?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJOvCHD1uHY

mimi said...

Tony: you have a gift for reminding me of the bestest of moshing times!

Ah me, I find myself in mind of gigs at the old Clarendon at Hammersmith.

Such times, such laughs, such youthful carelessness.

mimi said...

But I think you have me tagged as a rude girl - loving my Specials, and such, but this is me too:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y2ERAmj5SRE

mimi said...

A bit of fun for all. Doesn't get much better than this.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xYuMJswrFEA&mode=related&search=

tony said...

Rude girl? Not really: hardly anyone these days is brought up as we were...

My own tastes are pretty catholic too (which reminds me: I was looking for Zappa's 'Catholic Girls' but could only find some poor copies). Here's yet another of my 'all time favourites'
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RK387PZ4UOQ

mimi said...

now this I didn't know. What a fab song, and doesn't she just remind you of Joni Mitchell in her early years?

tony said...

So glad you liked it. I see what you mean. Which reminds me:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zRjwjbB-xUI

mimi said...

tony: through your various links you have taken me back to the wonderful hot and lazy summer of 76 when we were all so innocent and it was wonderful.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p6pphVs8bF0&mode=related&search=

Next thing I'll be trying to find is the Low Spark of High Heeled Boys!

tony said...

Hmm... by 76 my innocence was somewhat tainted...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmysVoRBgyA

mimi said...

Blimey - haven't listened to old Baz for ages, but love it!

That's what I wondered when driving into town that time.

Amazing how many songs we have in common.

mimi said...

While I'm trying to think of the song Eve of Destruction reminds me of, how about this to pass the time.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmysVoRBgyA

tony said...

Let me see, Mimi: while you're thinking about the song 'Eve of Destruction' reminds you of, you send me a link to 'Eve of Destruction' to keep me occupied. I think it's time for bed. Before I go, here's another. Can't find the one with Judy Bell but...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sLFJgVJTiyc

mimi said...

Found it: protest songs have plenty of mileage:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fw5HhibrQco

offside said...

Could you two turn it down? I can barely hear myself having a life, here...

mimi said...

Oh hello Offie - just woken up have you?

Tony's latest is cool soul, so quite quiet.

tony said...

Ah Mimi. Now, if you can only find me the b side I'll be eternally grateful.

Offie - I'm waiting for your 'Blues de les bleus' to appear hear.

Here's your first line:
I woke up this morning,

mimi said...

Oops - think I duplicated posted Eve of Destruction.

Hum.

Tony: which B side are you seeking?

tony said...

mimi - country joe - 'Maria'

offkey said...

Tony,

do you want it in A or B flat?

mimi said...

I think this was what I meant
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_7C0QGkiVo

offandunder said...

And if you must know, I woke up this morning and caught the last twenty minutes of England's "game", which cheered me up no end.

36 to what?

mimi said...

tony: to find Maria, try going here.
You'll need Real Player, but it's an easy download.
http://www.countryjoe.com/jukebox.htm

tony said...

Thanks mimi - I saw Alice's Restaurant when it came out. So funny.

Offie - "And if you must know, I woke up this morning and caught the last twenty minutes of England's "game"". Love that offie. Don't care though - I'm trying to change nationality. You still haven't told me who you met in the summer...

mimi here's another (don't look at the pictures)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BgFMCdVvBKM

tony said...

Ohhh, thanks again, mimi - hadn't heard that for... quite some years. (maria)

mimi said...

Could stay up for hours exchanging clips and quips, but have to sign off:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMJXDHo9klw&mode=related&search=

tony said...

brilliant leaving, mimi. Here's mine
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOBQ2QAEgQQ

Anonymous said...

tony, mimi, thanks for the answers. So basically short cricket with added diversions, for people who lack the attention span for real cricket? Maybe I should give it a try.

munni said...

That was me posting above, don't know why it showed up as anonymous.

mimi said...

Great song tony. Not sure how Offie will feel about it!

gg said...

Some quick answers:

1) Ljungberg does play for Sweden's female side - calls herself Hanna. Come to think of it, Hanna is a bloody sight harder (and better) than Freddie. Strange as it may seem, Freddie earns more.

2) 20/20 is a form of cricket in which it takes a shorter amount of time for England supporters to progress from feeling quietly optimistic to raucously suicidal.

Tweet it, digg it