Saturday, September 26, 2009
The Austrobludgeon rain making ritual (or possibly something more arcane)
Now B and I have been working on learning as much as we can about our new country -- because someone who doesn't try and fit in to the culture and norms of the place deserves to be as miserable as they're going to be. In a lot of ways it's not too hard: there are a lot of parallels between the places and cultures, and we share some of the source material. We speak the same language (mostly) and have a similar sense of humour. We play the same sports... well, mostly. Now Barbs is a cricket fan and so the TV was on the sports channel. I'm a mediocre spectator as I like doing rather than watching, and I like the more solitary outdoor/danger-sports myself but in order to get on with people (in this area for instance it's rugby union and cricket) actually knowing a little about the sport and players is social lubricant. So when I switched on the TV to watch the news with my breakfast (boring, middle-aged habit of mine, but B's usually not up then, and if she is, eats on the run. I've been up for a few hours and like to switch off mail etc mode, and move onto book mode.) there was Australian commentator talking so instead of switching over to news I watched... and after 25 minutes I concluded I had either stumbled on the Austrobludgeon rain making ritual -- there was quite a lot of crashing into each other and bleeding and it was chucking down with rain, or something more arcane still - 'Australian rules'. The ball was a miniture rugby ball, the field was a cricket pitch, they played basketball with no hoops and the poles had made babies... and after 25 minutes I had figured they were trying to kick the ball between some of the posts. I wasn't sure which direction they were playing in or what else they were doing. Oh, and they had IIRC behinds, which were not at all what I thought they might be any more than 'silly mid-on' is what any non-cricket innoculated person would think it was. Still... I thought 'better learn if you want to fit in' so I looked it up on Wikipedia... Which clarified a few things, but I suspect this going to be a steep learning curve. Why are there so many poles?