If Sachin Tendulkar runs riot against, say, the KKR, how can someone who is ostensibly a KKR fan not cheer? If Virender Sehwag starts clobbering the ball against, say, the RCB, how can someone who is ostensibly a Challengers fan not cheer? You can't possibly prefer your complicated allegiance towards some plutocratic league side to that towards national heroes, can you? With this in mind, I've been carefully observing those rippling flags at stadiums. They ripple all the time. Everyone is cheering as much as they can as long as someone is doing the clouting.
So to tease out — as promised in my previous column — my comparison of the IPL with pornography, someone's giving it to someone nearly all the time. It doesn't so much matter who's giving it to whom. Action is character; action is destiny; action — however mindless — is all. I must clarify that contrary to what you might think, I am not a complete twit. I see the point of the IPL, and certainly that of T20. I merely don't see the point of it for me.
I understand that if a lot of people watch/read/listen to something, it necessarily comes to be seen as a good thing. Look at the size of the porno industry globally. It has rather more fans than the films of Luis Bunuel, doesn't it? As John Updike said: “Reality is constantly being formed by the solidification of illusions.” Me, I am open to have my reality modified for me. For the moment, the difference between IPL and cricket is — apologies, it's my day for analogies — the difference between snakes-and-ladders (the thrilling leaps on those ladders, the lurking danger of plummeting via snakes) and chess (austere, minimalist, contemplative).
I'd go for chess. But then, snakes-and-ladders has lots of takers. Espec-ially among five-year-olds.
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