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Rated: E · Other · Comedy · #1821929
A man experiences disaster, then triumph over adversity; thanks to his love of cricket.
I was in my bank last week making a deposit; I forget which day it was, a Thursday maybe? Okay, I'm kidding, like I'm going to forget the date when I put money into my account?

Anyway, much to my amusement, this particular bank is a huge sponsor of cricket in our country. You know, that weird game where they play for days on end; only to end up in a draw.

Did you know that if a player questions an umpires decision, or shows dissent, he gets fined? Now, when I say dissent, I'm not talking about the player stomping his feet and screaming; if he looks at the umpire in anything but a neutral way, he's up on a charge, and can be fined or suspended. Perhaps we could try that down at Murphy's Bar the next time the Black Caps are playing; whenever anyone disagrees with my opinion, they get fined.

But I digress. Back to my bank, and the cricket. As is often the case, most of the tellers are woman, and this added to my amusement as in my experience most women can't stand cricket. This phrase rings a bell: "Don't think you'll be spending all day watching the cricket; you've got the lawns to mow, and the cars to wash." I remembered this phrase because it was said to me just last week - by my wife.

Can you imagine the almost catatonic state some of the bank tellers would have gotten themselves into? There's bound to be tellers there that can't stand any sport; let alone one that would take their men folk away from their domestic chores for hours at a time.

Then, they arrive at work on Monday morning, a place where at least there is a sanctuary from the unending analysis and opinions of sport; especially one they loathe; only to be informed their employer has become the main sponsor; and they'll be required to actively participate in promotions, including wearing the jerseys of their beloved national team. I am bemused now at the thought; it would be like me having to sit through a talk on the latest techniques and trends in cross stitch.

Driving home, as I took the exit from the motorway, such thoughts occupied my mind. I noticed the time and flicked the car radio onto the sports channel; seeing if I could catch the last of the cricket commentary, before they called "stumps" for the day.

Unfortunately for me, the commentary I got was not quite what I expected.

"Wixor, why are you listening to your precious cricket game?" my wife lamented to me. "You know I need to discuss with you what we're doing for Christmas this year. It's July and we need to start planning; should we go to my sisters this year, or would you prefer a nice family time at home?"

I think women have a sixth sense for when you are not listening to them; you can get away with a few "I guess so," or "How did you feel when that happened", but not for long. You can get caught out quite easily, especially when they ask for your opinion; or something else which is equally unexpected; or unnecessary.

What gave me away this time was an unlucky co-incidence: just as my wife was asking for my opinion, there was some great excitement in the game; perhaps, finally, we had "broken through" and claimed the wicket of Ricky Ponting, the star Australian batsman? Heady stuff, and reasonably important, I would have thought; but no, planning for Christmas was apparently more important.

I had tilted my head towards the radio; a sort of reflex action I suppose, as if being three inches closer to the radio would somehow make it easier to hear. Now I was trapped; she had seen the movement of my head, and it had coincided with my non-responsive "Well, that might work"; to her question about whether we should stay home, or travel this Christmas.

"Are you even listening to me?" She thundered on. We were stuck at the traffic lights, and my immediate thought was that I was trapped. I would now have to discuss Christmas; rather than the merits of our fantastic new batsman: Kane Wilkinson. I looked out the window; mentally preparing myself to talk about Christmas in Stratford; or a household of family members, at home, in Hamilton.

To add to my anguish, another cheer came from the radio, and this was too much for my beloved wife. She calmly reached across, and turned off the radio! "There, that's what I think of your precious game," she said in triumph. In shock, I pondered my next move; but nothing came to mind. Okay, Christmas in Stratford might not be so bad?

The only thing that saved me was I had forgotten to fix the air conditioning in the car; but it was the middle of summer, and there was a test match going on; so when did I have time? "Can you wind down your window please Wixor, it is so hot in here!" she pleaded.

I pressed the window button, and, as soon it begun it's downwards journey it was if a whole new world opened up for me. We were in a traffic jam; cars in front, behind, and most importantly: beside us. I had expected relative silence, except for the low murmur of idling engines, but instead my ears were met with the paradise of cricket commentary! Yes, the car beside us, in fact it seemed all the cars had their windows down, and their radios blasting full on. Johnny big shot, in a Volvo, Peter black beard, in the Volkswagon, even Nora nobody, in her Ford Falcon; all had the cricket commentary on.

I felt my wife glaring at me, and she said: "Be careful what you say next, Wixor, very careful". There was no need for her warning, of course; I was already planning in my mind how I could spin this story to my advantage down at Murphy's Bar.
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