One of our old logos.
Our first reader got in touch with us this week – a man who once went by the name of The Scientician. Some of you may remember him from his shocking exposé of Jaffa Cakes as a sports snack.
The Scientician pointed out to us that we’re 10. We don’t mean in the ‘your mental age is 10’ kind of way – although people do say that kind of thing to us as well.
No, he meant that this website is ten. We started it in January 2006 (albeit at a different web address). That’s ten years ago. The site’s so old that people actually arrived at it via Ask Jeeves.
As The Scientician said in a follow-up email, which we’ll reproduce in full.
He’s got a point. On this domain alone, there’s been over 3,000 posts, over 40,000 comments and well over a million deleted spam comments (genuinely). We also knocked out over a thousand posts on the old Blogspot site in little more than a year. Them were the days.
So how did it all begin?
Er, we’re not entirely sure actually.
We’ve a vague notion that we’d sent The Scientician an email, or quite possibly even an actual letter, and that this had led him to utter the immortal words: “You should write.”
We’ve no real memory of what that particular missive was about. We’re pretty sure it included curlews, but beyond that it’s anyone’s guess. The important thing is that he told us to write and we listened to him.
We asked what we should write and where. He told us to start a website because that was what someone semi-famous had done and they’d got a job out of it.
So we started a website and soon enough we got a job and arguably even what passes for a career out of it.
Except it isn’t, because we’re just going to carry on the same as always.
We know what you all think. You think we spend our Thursdays sitting around eating flapjacks and watching old episodes of Airwolf.
Well you’re wrong. We don’t renounce cricket on Thursdays. Far from it. We actually put in a double shift, writing all the stuff that comes out on a Friday.
First of all, Cricket Badger. It’s the 100th edition tomorrow, so we’ll gratefully accept your warm applause. We’ll also overlook the fact that cricket demands people clap for everything, devaluing the whole hand percussion appreciation noise immensely. You can and should sign up here. There is nothing to lose but a small amount of whoever provides your email account’s server space. Also time.
Secondly, the Cricinfo Twitter round-up. Yes, that still happens. It happens like heck, whatever that might mean. This week’s should appear in a prominent position on the homepage soon, but you can also find it on our author page. It’ll remain accessible there even when it’s been demoted and replaced by an Ed Smith think piece about why form is a myth.
And now we have to go somewhere and eat things. Possibly drink things too. Who knows? Life is unpredictable.
All Out Cricket have a regular feature where a writer celebrates an especially glorious summer and all the great memories it brings back. We had to rewrite ours because the first draft was too depressing.
Our Golden Summer was 2000. Obviously it’s not. Obviously it’s 2005. But they can’t have everyone repeating the same bloody summer every month, so for the purposes of this feature, ours was 2000.
Brace yourselves. We’re taking a week off. Apparently it’s not just fast bowlers who need to recharge from time to time.
As ever, we’ve got stuff lined up for next week: match reports, summat about New Zealand and stuff we’ve done for other people that you may have missed.
Those of you who aren’t reading this particular post, please ensure you leave outraged comments about how we’re not covering some major news story or other (as if we ever actually report on anything).
Clearly the highlight of this weeks’ Twitter round-up. (Yes, we do still write that.)
Our other favourite bit is Tino Best’s caption to a photo of himself where he claims he was bowling ‘thunderbolts’ and suggests that everyone nearby is looking on ‘in amazement’. To be totally clear, this is a caption written by Tino Best, about Tino Best.
It’s hard not to love him.
Our final King of Cricket appeared on the All Out Cricket website a couple of weeks ago. We didn’t link to it at the time because we thought it would get lost amid all the World Cup stuff. We didn’t want that to happen because it’s Shiv and you all know how we feel about Shiv.
Rickets, Chomsky, Shane Watson talking bollocks and the art of persisting for long enough that eventually the world changes shape to accommodate you. It’s all in there.
That’s the surprising conclusion we’ve drawn from the last few weeks of cricket. More on this and a review of Australia’s win yesterday in our final World Cup column for the Mumbai Mirror.
We’ll maybe have a few points to make about the tournament as a whole in coming days (not today, we’re taking a day off), but we’d just like to say that in general we’ve really enjoyed it. Some of it was flat, but it didn’t seem as lifeless as a few of the previous instalments and in New Zealand, Mitchell Starc and India’s bizarre surge in seam bowling ability, there were some great stories to follow.
He just had a bad day once upon a time. Seems a long time ago. We just about managed to remember that far back for our Mumbai Mirror World Cup final day piece, in which we also expressed the hope that the team with no spinner should lose.
We started typing this with New Zealand needing 10 wickets. We were going to say something about how we hoped that turned out to be a very specific moment in time, when lo! Aaron Finch was dismissed…
This World Cup really hasn’t turned out as batsman-centric as people imagined. Batting-centric, maybe, but not batsman-centric.
Australia have Steve Smith and a whole bunch of minor contributors. New Zealand have four overs of Brendon McCullum and then everyone’s a little too shell-shocked to really know what’s going on after that. More on this at the usual place.
There was a long and rambling food analogy that didn’t make it into our review of the second semi-final. It would have been something about Finch’s innings providing a decent amount of substance without really affecting the quality of the meal/Australia’s performance to any great extent.
We also highlighted where India went wrong. If you listen to Shane Warne, his ilk and probably most modern coaches, cricket matches are decided not by ability, but by the degree to which the combatants display nebulous qualities like ‘energy’ and ‘intensity’ and whether or not they ‘back themselves’.
As a writer, we back ourself to call Warne a guff-talking dullard whenever necessary, but we can’t promise that we’ll do so with either energy or intensity.