Skip to main content

A Dubious and Tenuous Basis

The unusual sway that cricket holds over people of India represents a cause for concern. The extraordinary sense of joy expressed when the Indian cricket team won the World Cup was quite out of line with the actual achievement.

The achievement, such as it was, was simply this. The Indian team won a few cricket matches. Cricket by definition is a rather unpredictable game that has many vagaries.

Cricket is played in precious few nations of the world. Keeping in mind the population of those other countries puts things in a rather stark perspective.

Here is the COMPLETE LIST of countries (and their populations) where cricket is played with some seriousness: England (60 million), Australia (20 million), New Zealand (3 million), South Africa (40 million), India (1,200 million), Pakistan (150 million), Bangladesh (150 million), Sri Lanka (20 million), and West Indies (1 million).

As the population figures show, the entire world of cricket will easily fit inside India.

Population figures apart, there is a deeper question. What does it say about Indians if they can attach a sense of national pride with the 'team' winning a game of cricket. Clearly, the team comprises a few young men who have a very specific set of skills and this skill is rather useless in many ways. In giving pride of place to people with this skill, people of India are making their choices very clear.

It would appear that for Indians, cricketing skills are more important than many other kinds of skills. What other skills are Indians dismissing by choosing them over cricket?


Popular posts from this blog

Sarah Kay's poem from TED

If I should have a daughter, instead of mom, she's going to call me Point B,

because that way she knows that no matter what happens, at least she can always find her way  to me.
And I am going to paint the Solar Systems on the backs of her hands, so she has to learn the entire universe before she can say 'Oh, I know that like the back of my hand'
And she's going to learn that this life will hit you, hard, in the face, wait for you to get back up, just so we can kick you in the stomach but getting the wind knocked out of you is the only way to remind your lungs how much they like the taste of air.

Longforms and 'Best of 2017' Lists and Favorite Books by Ashutosh Joglekar and Scott Aaronson

Top 10 Crazy Facts About India

Here's a random list of things. 1.Indians sometimes prefer to abort a fetus if they find out that it's female. (Or they just kill the new born baby after it's born.) 2.There are more than 20 million babies born in India. EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR. 3.Child labor is so commonplace in India that few notice it or consider it out of the ordinary. Kids work as waiters or dishwashers in roadside restaurants. Sometimes, kids ferry tea to the local police station from a nearby roadside tea stall. 4.Massive numbers of kids and younger and adult women are employed as maids in middle class to rich households. Middle class houses might pay 200 rupees to a female who comes and washes the dishes. Rich houses might employ women permanently by paying them more. 5.Cars in the Indian cities are washed in the morning by car-washers who tend to be young men who get paid around 100 to 200 rupees per month for this service. 6.India is home to some crazily competitive exams. The IIT JEE and the IIM CAT have …