Test and Twenty20: They’re family

Peter Zitterschlager Roar Pro

By , Peter Zitterschlager is a Roar Pro

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    Pff, you know the saying, ‘You can choose your friends, but you can’t choose your family’? Tell me about it!

    T20’s invited me over for a barbie. Again.

    I mean, the guy just can’t take a hint. I’ve come up with all these pointed excuses to put him off, but here he is phoning me again. Like, sheesh, it’s getting so that I’ll just have to flat out insult him.

    Take how he invited me over last month. I told him, “Saturday week? Oh damn, Saturday week I’m going to the Sydney Biennale. You know, where it’s all things refined. ‘Cos, you know, I’m a creature of refinement. Unlike you.”

    Of course, I didn’t actually say those bits at the end; I just intimated them. But boy was that a colossal blunder, ‘cos subtleties work as well with T20 as aesthetic batting.

    As for the Biennale? Well, of course I didn’t go. In fact, I wouldn’t be caught dead at a Biennale. I just used its cosmopolitan air to illustrate how different we are. The same way I claimed a love of Cirque du Soleil when wriggling out of an invite a time before.

    The barbie is this weekend and seeing as I haven’t been to one in a while, I guess I’ll have to be dutiful and go. But, geez, it’s going to be brutal.

    For starters, on top of Twenty20 I’ve got to put up with the other family – for one, bores like One Day Internationals.

    Just like Twenty20, ODI has the attention span of a goldfish. Actually, make that a goldfish in a tank low on oxygen!

    Like, the minute I’m not talking about partying or hitting sixes, their eyes glaze over.

    Take how I was talking about the game one time. I was sayin’ how great it is when bowlers were all over batsmen – you know, when they’re on the attack and there are four slips and a gully in the cordon and the batsmen have to hang tough for entire sessions just to survive.

    Anyway, I’m getting all passionate talking about it, and I’m thinking me and ODI are on the same page, but then he says, “Yeah, all that stuff is okay, but, you know, in the end, you just wanna see the ball getting hammered … don’tcha?”.

    He then wanders off and cranks up T20’s doof music and then spends the rest of the arvo shotgunning tinnies with T20’s knobhead mate Big Bash while I’m left stewing over how his ‘don’tcha’ didn’t even hint that it welcomed a right of reply.

    Disconcerting as that was, though, at least I was doing the yapping and he the listening. When it’s the other way around, boy is that a snore-fest.

    ODI Australia cricket
    (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)

    Nobody hashes a story more than ODI. Sure he gets em off to a fair start, but then he just drones on and on and on, just like overs 15 to 40 where batsmen nurdle singles and bowlers are happy to concede em.

    And as for adding irony? Forget about it. His idea of irony is six to win off the last ball. Gee, how imaginative.

    So, as you can see, it’s going to be brutal spending an arvo with those troglodytes. Absolutely torturous.

    On the upside, Sheffield Shield will probably turn up, so I’ll have someone who’s on my wavelength. That said, Sheffield is pretty morose nowadays, so he’ll probably end up bumming me out by pining for the good old days and complaining that everything in this era is about money, money, money.

    I also kinda feel that he resents me every now and then. Like, I get the feeling that he thinks I rarely leave time for him in my schedule. But what does he want me to do? Work part-time? I mean, sheesh, just like everyone, I’ve got mortgage pressures too.

    So anyway, as I said, you can choose your friends, but you can’t choose your family. But if you could? Well, I’d whittle all the short forms. That’d leave just me, Shield and Kanga cricket.

    And perhaps I’d make space for Tippity runs at the table? Nice wholesome kid that Tippity. Nice wholesome kid.

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