Cricket offers so much more than any other sporting experience. Very often it poses a series of moral and philosophical questions worthy of any Radio 4 mid-afternoon programme. There’s the “how white can white possibly get?” type question, or the “is darkness a thing in itself, the absence of some other thing, or just a figment of Neil Mallender’s imagination?” type question.
Day one of the Trent Bridge Test offered this question: Is it morally acceptable to handcuff your friend to a hired dwarf?
There are some facts that might add to this discussion:
- This was a stag do and the handcuffee was the stag.
- The dwarf was dressed (and painted) as a Smurf.
- As was the stag.
- The stag hadn’t turned up at the match handcuffed to a dwarf. He had been sat down minding his own business when his mates had distracted him and then someone had handcuffed him to a hired dwarf.
I should also point out that the group in question wasn’t actually us. One of our party knew one of their party, which is where we got the information from. We immediately launched into a deep and challenging discussion.
To summarise the argument, on the “against” side we had:
- This is the 21st century
- Haven’t we moved on from this sort of thing?
- What about respect?
- What about self respect?
- What does this say about a society in which the man in question feels this is an acceptable way to earn a living?
- What does this say about a society in which the man in question feels this is the only way he can make a living?
On the other side, we had:
- It’s bloody funny
Once we’d resolved that debate, we moved on to another, related, debate: How much does it cost to hire a dwarf for a day?
We reckoned that it must be over £100, otherwise it would be less than minimum wage for proper stag do hours. But £300 seemed a bit steep, even when divided among all the stag do-ists. So we settled on about £200 as a rough guess. Isn’t cricket brilliant?