Cricket contrasts

This is remarkable:

Although, Pooran might have thrown a catch to the nearby fielder and got the batsman out. All he did was save a few runs. So, not ten out of ten.

I also recommend a look at the scorecard, if you care anything about cricket. Biggest successful run chase in IPL history, apparently.

Thankyou Maia Bouchier, who I once saw play in an otherwise all male cricket match at Lord’s between my old posh school and another posh school. (Memo to self, transfer to here two blog postings I did about this strange event.)

I misspent (by which I mean I greatly enjoyed it) quite a bit of today watching Essex get their draw against Somerset, and win The Bob, as I hear they are now calling it. This was a very different sort of game to that IPL game. For starters it went on for five days, yet it was still a draw. But despite it being a draw, Essex won. You don’t see that very often. Meanwhile, that IPL game, like all IPL games, was all done in a few hours.

The only major thing these two games had in common, aside from both being cricket matches, is that, because of The Plague, there was nobody watching them at the actual grounds where they were played.

Statues do matter

Or so the recent dramas in Parliament Square would suggest, during which graffiti was attached to the statues of Churchill and Lincoln. Cue angry history lessons from Old People.

So here are a few more statue photos I photoed recently in Parliament Square, including the above two personages, but adding Gandhi and Millicent Fawcett, basically because I like the photos:

And while I’m on the subject of statues, I recently checked out the statues of Lord Dowding (of Battle of Britain fame) and Bomber Harris (of WW2 bombing offensive infamy) outside St Clement Danes, at the other end of the Strand from Trafalgar Square:

I knew that, when I got to this spot, I’d encounter Dowding and Harris. Ben Johnson and Gladstone were both surprises.

Memo to people intending to end up as statues in London: Join the RAF and wear a hat with a flat top sloping slightly backwards. That way, you won’t get pigeon shit on your face. Seriously, someone badly needs to invent an invisible pigeon scarer. Some kind of tiny electronic device that vibrates in a pigeon-scaring way, solar powered so it will go on working for ever.

The above link to my recent pigeon scaring posting being the only link in this posting, apart from the one at the top about the graffiti (so as people reading this in a year’s time will understand which current events I’m referring to), which is a bit lazy and a bit egocentric, but I’m in a hurry to get ready for something else. You surely have all the words you need to find out whatever you want to find out, e.g. if you are a Young Person wanting to find out if Churchill was anything else besides being a racist, or if Lincoln did or said anything about black slavery in America, besides being President at a time when there were still black slaves. (While you’re learning about that, try finding out what Gandhi said about Apartheid, when he was younger and living in South Africa.)

Fifteen dancing ladies in 1923

I have now well and truly caught the Shorpy habit (from Mick Hartley mostly). Usually the photos at Shorpy are of Americans, but these ladies dancing (or just posing?) on a beach are British, although the beach is American:

Shorpy calls these ladies a “millipede”, but there are only fifteen of them. Most of them are holding the lady behind’s leg up, but the one at the front has to keep her leg up unaided, and the one at the back is doing no lifting. Just thought I’d mention it.

More seriously, changing fashions in figures is a fascinating subject. These ladies look to me a wee bit more plump than their equivalents now.

I remember noticing when Indian movie stars stopped being fat, and thinking: those Indians are finally eating properly. Good news. High status Indians no longer needed to prove they could afford to eat. They needed to prove that they could resist the desire to eat too much. I’m guessing that 1923 in Britain was still a time when food was somewhat scarce, albeit not as scarce as when these paintings were done.

I spend a lot more effort and time photoing and presenting my own photos than I do searching for good photos by other people. Basically, I let people like Mick Hartley do it for me. And Shorpy. Also this guy (I love that one). Any other photography suggestions would be most welcome.

Private jet with tent

Indeed:

Photoed by Michael Jennings at Madras Municipal Airport, and posted on Facebook on August 21st 2017.

Said Michael, next to the photo:

All accommodation in this town has been sold out for three years. It doesn’t matter if you arrive in your own jet – you are still sleeping in a tent.

What Michael didn’t say was what the circumstances of this accommodation shortage were. Was something in particular happening at that particular time, or is accommodation in Madras always something you have to book three years in advance? Michael?

Ever since I got it clear in my head that Michael allows all photos he posts on Facebook to be re-posted here, provided there is a little globe logo above them (which means that the whole world is welcome to read and share what he has put), and provided I give him the credit for having photoed them, I have been trawling through the photos he has posted. The above photo is now one of my favourites of his that I have encountered so far.

This link works for me, because I am “on” Facebook (although I have yet to put anything there myself). Does it work for you? Do you have to be a Facebooker for it to work? Or will that link get you to Michael’s Facebook posting anyway? Questions questions.

I like that Michael’s shadow is present, bottom left.

“Architecture” is in the category list for this not so much because of the very forgettable airport building, but because of the tent. Are tents architecture? I think so, and a highly significant form of architecture. A form of architecture that has transformed the nature of “homelessness” by providing homeless people with … homes! When I was a kid, we had to “pitch” a tend by banging wooded pegs into the ground, which consequently had to be soft. Try doing that at an airport. Or on a city pavement. These new tents that you merely have keep weighted down have changed the world.

Whenever I encounter such tents on the streets of London I have been photoing them, ever since the above thoughts first crossed my mind. Real Soon Now (although I promise nothing) I should dig up all my tent photos and do a posting about this.

KC Gandhi squeak a win

Churchy just tweeted this:

He doesn’t say where he found it.

Having got to a thousand, Dhanawade then wanted to dig in and make it a big thousand. But he was cruelly cut short, just as he was getting into his stride.

Well, no. Proper report here. Happened way back in January 2016. I vaguely heard about this, or read about it and forgot, or something. Nice to nail it down.

On supporting Spurs – but not properly

Well, it’s official. I care more about cricket, as played by anyone, than I care about football, as played by Spurs, the football team that I tell myself I support.

If I truly support Spurs, how come I only bothered to wonder the next day how badly they had lost to Barcelona recently, in their clearly doomed attempt to qualify for the last sixteen of the European Champions League, or whatever they call it? Answer me that. On the night, I was so concerned about when the next test match between Australia and India would start, and whether I could hear any commentary on it, that I completely ignored Spurs. When you consider that this Barca/Spurs game was on Tuesday night, and that the Australia/India game didn’t start until the small hours of Friday morning, you can see what a crap Spurs fan I am.

It was only some time on Wednesday that I internetted the news that Spurs had got a draw against Barca (thanks to a late equaliser), and that because Inter Milan had also only got a draw in their game, Spurs had squeaked through, but only after an agonising wait for the Inter result caused by that game going on for a couple of minutes longer.

While all this drama was going on, I was oblivious to it, and was instead scratching about on the internet chasing that cricket game.

Which is still going on. Day 3 will be getting underway in a few hours, on Radio 5 live sports extra. My sleep is already deranged, in a way that usually only happens when England are playing in Australia.

Today, I did keep track of the Spurs Burnley game, which Spurs won (thanks to a very late winner). So: more drama. But although I was aware of this while it was happening, I was again scandalously relaxed about it all, despite this game being billed as a Spurs Must Win If They Are To Stay In With A Chance To Win The League sort of a game. Oh well, I was thinking, as it remained 0-0 right up until extra time. Oh well, that’s how it goes. Maybe next year, when they have their own stadium to play in.

Maybe the reason I am not shouting at Spurs in my kitchen, urging them on to glory, is that they are indeed engaged in building themselves a brand new custom built headquarters, in the form of that new White Hart Lane stadium. So according to my way of thinking, they shouldn’t now be doing this well.

However, it would seem that all the money that the new stadium will bring into the club has caused Spurs to do something now that they haven’t been doing for several decades, which is keep their best players. I’m talking about the likes of Kane, Deli Alli, Moura (who scored the late equaliser against Barca) and Eriksen (who got today’s very late winner). Such stars might still make more money if they went to Real Madrid or some such even richer club. But, at Real, they might not do as well on the pitch as they are now doing for Spurs. They might then fall off the football pyramid of greatness, never to climb back on it again. Footballers are interested in money and glory, not just in money, not least because glory turns into more money later, when they later try to get football jobs without being players any more. Spurs look like they could be about to do both money and glory rather well.

The same goes for the current rather-hard-to-spell Spurs manager who is masterminding all this. Many now assume that he will shortly move to Madrid. I’m not so sure.

I mean, if this is how well these Spurs guys can do while the new Spurs HQ is still being finished, think how well they might do when they get really settled in in the new place and are able to concentrate entirely on football.

Or maybe it’s that a new stadium is not really a new headquarters building, more like a huge new factory, for something like a brand new airplane. Boeing bets the company every time they launch a totally new aircraft. A football club bets itself whenever it moves into a new stadium. But this stadium is actually for doing football, rather than just a place to do lots of headquartering.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog

Sardar Patel goes large

I do like Dezeen. Mostly it’s just Posh Modernism, but every so often it reports on something a lot more interesting.

Like: what is now the world’s tallest statue, four times the size of the Statue of Liberty, recently erected in Gujarat state, India.

This looks for all the world like it’s Photoshopped, but it truly isn’t:

Vallabhbhai Patel (31 October 1875 – 15 December 1950), popularly known as Sardar Patel, was an Indian politician who served as the first Deputy Prime Minister of India. He was an Indian barrister and statesman, a senior leader of the Indian National Congress and a founding father of the Republic of India who played a leading role in the country’s struggle for independence and guided its integration into a united, independent nation. …

Prediction: a Global Big Statue Race.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog

The Hundred is silly

Now that the proper cricket is over for the summer, the cricket fan’s mind turns towards silliness like The Hundred. This is the idea of having a new slam bang format, in addition to Twenty20. E(nglish) C(ricket) B(oard) Chairman Graves is now pushing this, and there is push back.

This cricket fan has two things to say about why The Hundred is so very, very silly.

Thing one. On what planet does a cricket administrator look at cricket on earth, and say: The Trouble With Cricket On Earth Is That It Doesn’t Have Enough Different Formats. There Should Be Another. ????

Thing two. The Hundred reminds me of the days when they mucked about with the limited overs format, with the result that for quite a while, or so I remember it, the English counties were playing 40/40 overs, while internationals were 50/50 overs. The heart of the problem was that the English administrators thought they ruled cricket, or behaved as if they thought this, and consequently imagined that they, on their own, could impose a new Format. But, there was a world out there.

And there is a world out there now, an even bigger one than then. Unless The World agrees that The Hundred is a good format, it will be a flop. Cricket is governed by The World (sometimes known as: India), not by England. Do the people pushing The Hundred have the Indians on board with it? I thought not.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog

“I’m calling you from Windows about your computer …”

I have been receiving several of these calls recently, from faraway Indian-sounding guys who all, coincidentally, have English-sounding names.

Once again, I am reminded that the internet is the internet, and that if I type some words into my computer, along the lines of “I’m calling you from Windows …”, I should get the story. And: I did.

That story was posted in 2012. As it says, this rubbish obviously works. Five years later, they’re still at it, with an identical script.

I’m somewhat ashamed to relate that it worked on me, the first time, a bit. I seriously considered the possibility of the call being real, until I worked out that it obviously wasn’t. Such shame spasms are important because they stop people talking about these scams and thereby reducing their chances of working.

In the early nineteenth century, sheep stealers were hanged, or so goes the legend. Rip-off phone calls like the above make me understand why this happened, insofar as it actually did. People talk, quite reasonably, about how people stole sheep because they were starving, but I’m guessing that having your sheep (singular or plural) stolen was a serious blow about which you (the victim) were ashamed, and that catching the bastards was very difficult even if you did tell other people. So, when, by chance, sheep stealers were caught, they were often or at least sometimes killed. I completely get it.

More often, however, they were (scroll down to the end) transported to Australia.

Once again, the internet tells the story. This is yet another way in which the experience of getting old (the first posting you’ll get, as of now, if you follow that link, will be this one) has been transformed. We oldies love to satisfy our curiosity about things that are none of our business and of no great interest to anyone, except us. Time was when discussions about pointless trivia could go on for ever in a fact-free fashion. Now, all you need is one small machine and the matter can be settled. Does the internet kill conversation? Discuss. Or, you could type this question into the internet and get a definitive answer, yes it does or no it doesn’t. End of conversation. Or not.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog