Monday, March 19, 2007

Idle threat of the week

In deciding the Idle Threat of the Week yesterday, the panel of judges referred to our old friend the dictionary, which is now available on line. We looked up the word madness:

1 mentally ill. 2 extremely foolish or ill-advised. 3 showing impulsiveness, confusion, or frenzy. 4 informal very enthusiastic about something. 5 informal very angry. 6 (of a dog) rabid.

This was in reference to the "March Madness" moniker which has been emanating from the mouths of breathless play-by-play announcers and the pages of your favorite sport's sections (and blogs) this week.

The NCAA tournament does fit the more informal definitions of madness. Yet, as we look outwards, past the shores of our great nation, we realized something is amiss.

Just by turning on our computer and calling up our homepage, we noticed this article on India's loss to Bangladesh in their first match of the Cricket World Cup. Unlike India, Bangladesh isn't a traditional cricket power and, back home, Indians reacted to the stunning loss -- mind you it's a round robin tournament so India hasn't even been eliminated yet -- by storming the home of national team player Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

The price the wicketkeeper paid for his poor performance was a mob of 200 snarling cricket fans literally tearing down the walls and pillars of his home, while they burned him in effigy and chanted slogans suggesting his death. Indian authorities were forced to deploy paramilitary units at the nearby homes of other players to prevent possible attacks.

Now that is madness in the "mentally ill" all the way to the "(of a dog) rabid" sense of the word.

Let's face it: America just isn't a sports mad nation. The NCAA tournament is exciting and fun but, until player's homes are destroyed and troops are deployed, true madness it ain't.

While it does make for solid alliteration, the spurious implication of "March Madness" has, comming in as an one seed, captured Idle Threat of The Week for March 12th-18th.

No comments: