Thursday 16 November 2006

Getting fit for The Ashes

I started training in earnest for the upcoming Ashes series a week ago last Wednesday. You can never be too careful. As I sipped my tea and watched the Sky guy affix one of those ugly dishes to my chimney, I felt a warm glow of contentment gently cloak me. Laughing at him through my window as his ladders swayed playfully in the vicious gale, it struck me that he had a totally horrible job. 

He will be rewarded for his defacing of houses and deliverance of far too many channels with tired and witless comments about the recipient never leaving the sofa again. How we laughed. And then, worse, he will endure the awkward moments as the slob customer tries to find the strength to ask if the wank channels are included in the deal. He never does and they never are. You need to pay extra for that - although I understand you can get a good deal if you opt for the multi-wank package. 

But there is only one reason and one reason alone that I joined the onanistic underclass and got Sky - cricket. The Ashes, to be more precise. And the fact that I now find myself perfectly hooked on stuff like Hong Kong Vets and Used Car Roadshow is neither here nor there. And any blame that needs apportioning needs apportioned in the direction of Rupert Murdoch and should stay the fuck away from my door. I am an innocent in all of this. An innocent and reluctant subscriber to Sky, forced into a corner by terrestrial television having its bid of 87p for the cricket trumped by Rupert Murdoch's one of seventy-three-thousand-hundred-trillion-ten-plus-some-twelve. A lot, anyway. I never stood a chance.

So now I'm in training for The Ashes. Staying up later and later each night, watching more and more garbage as I try to acclimatise to the stupid hours Australians seem to keep. What's wrong with these people? Who in their right mind starts a cricket game at eleven at night?

Anyway, my winter is to be spent in the wee hours and my love for the England cricket team is to blame. From the darkness of Ireland I cast my bloodshot Scottish eyes towards expected English travails in bright and hopeful Australia. This shouldn't mean so much to me, but it does. Come on, England.

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