The latest ban on the mexican wave at the cricket is just the latest in the slippery slope to make every single public event as boring as humanly possible.
Here’s a short list of things that have been banned at sporting events since I have been a sports fan:
1:) Full-strength beer. (However, it is still acceptable to sell 5% alcohol mixed drinks like Johnny Walker + Coke Cans, presumably because stadiums refuse to give up the ridiculous profits from that stuff).
3.) Balls of any kind
5.) Entering the playing arena for any reason (kids at the cricket used to jump the fence to field boundaries all the time)
6.) Musical Instruments (And yet, every time Australia plays in the Carribbean, we get to hear the commentators gushing about the great “festival atmosphere” from the steel-drum bands.)
7.) The Mexican Wave
Who is asking for these changes? It certainly isn’t the cricket fans. The Barmy Army trumpeter is probably the least annoying part of the Barmy Army. At least you can’t hear his stupid accent when he’s playing the trumpet.
If the batsmen were the ones complaining about the trumpet I could understand, but all the players LOVE the Barmy Army trumpeter. And the fans. And everyone, it seems, except the stadium managers.
Why? Because when you give someone a little bit of power, they always lust for more. Even if that power is only over a few cricket fans, the most common trait shared by those in positions of authority is the absolute glee they take in shitting all over those they have power over.
Cricket Authorities banned the Barmy Army trumpeter and the Mexican wave for one reason: Because they can. And making other people sad makes the power-junkies happy.
I went to the test match this year in Perth. Unless you are a member, you can only buy mid-strength beer from the drink caravans. And you can only buy it in plastic cups. And because plastic cups don’t have lids, if you buy 4 of them you need a tray to carry them. And they charge an extra $2 for the carrying tray.
And if you go with 4 friends, you need to make 2 trips for your round, because it is against regulations for the staff to sell you more than 4 beers at a time. Presumably if they didn’t do that, you would buy 5 for yourself and drink them all when they were hot, or something.
And after the tea break, you can only buy 2 at a time. So you’d have to make 3 trips. It takes a special kind of sadist to come up with all these rules, but they somehow always manage to make it into positions of authority where they can cause the most annoyance.
The funny thing is that none of these regulations apply to the members areas. So presumably, the ability to stump up $200 at the start of the year instead of paying for each day as you go makes you a more responsible drinker, or something.
I don’t mind paying through the nose to go and see the occasional game of cricket or footy. I don’t even mind paying $7 for a home brand hamburger patty in stale bread on the odd occasion I go. I don’t even mind paying $6 for a hot beer.
What I can’t stand is being treated like a child by someone who decided his calling in life was to be a security guard at a sporting stadium. For that reason I rarely go to any live sporting events in Perth any more. I’d prefer to watch them on TV at home where I can do whatever I please.
Anyone with any sort of pride in themselves would refuse to attend events with these sort of restrictions in place. It’s just pathetic.
Update: Saltation explains it even better in comments.