on Sports
Cricket Diplomacy by Stan Silliman


Silliman on Sports
By Stan Silliman
Look Out! Bush Trying Cricket Diplomacy

      Years later, we’ll look back at this moment and say “We half expected Bush to start WWIII but it sucks that it was over a game a cricket.”
    Let’s back up.

    George W. Bush was in Pakistan, a place where terrorists like to blow up visiting dignitaries. In fact, they took out one of our envoys a few days before the president’s arrival.  So while Bush is there he figures a game of cricket is good for U.S.-Pakistani relations. After all they have the bomb and the president is fond of saying “Nuculer.” Pakistan is also the land where many expect Osama Bin Laden may be hiding in a cave. It’s also a place where suicide bombers might hollow out a cricket ball and load it with explosives.
    Let’s back up.

    Last April, the game of cricket played a central role when Musharraf and Indian Prime Minister Singh tried to resolve their differences over Kashmir by meeting in New Delhi while their two countries played a Sunday cricket match. So cricket diplomacy has been tried before.

    “Is this anything like baseball,” George said as he rolled up his sleeves, knocked dirt from his shoes and strode up to the wickets for a few swings. “This thing looks like a fraternity paddle. I owned a baseball team. We didn’t have any bats that looked like this.”

    Pakistani students faced the president as he took his turn at bat. Bowling to him was DeRatha Khan, one of the team captains. “Let’s see a little heat,” said Bush as he wiffed at the first pitch. “Khan! Fool me once, shame on you. But fool me twice…” The second pitch hit Bush in the shoulder. “Is that all you got? Little Indian girls… ya know, with the little dots in the head… can chuck it in here better than that. I’m from Texas, son. Hee, hee.” Bush connected with the third pitch and sent it into some trees. “Hey, I’m here in Islamabad and I’m not so bad.”
Cricket Diplomacy
    Bush then proceeded to give the index-pinky “hook-em Horns”sign and many of the Pakistani students looked at each other, saying “So Bush IS a Satanist.” They all nodded in agreement and said “I see why it’s called the Great Satan.”

    George had brought autographed baseballs to give out to each of the students of Islamabad College. “Cricket’s a good game,” George tells them, “but it’s not baseball. Cricket’s a game named after a little insect. Baseball’s a game named by Little Abner Doubleday and his wife Daisy Mae. Hopefully, someday, your cricket team can come to our country and play baseball with our Mexican baseball players.”  

    We give Bush credit. He survived. No WWIII broke out plus Islamabad students are exposed to baseball, perhaps a good thing.

    While George demonstrated how to throw a spitball, Laura read to fourth grade children about Bugs Bunny. She explained how Bugs lived down in a hole and Elmer Fudd, in his Dick Cheney hunting jacket, kept shooting down the hole, trying to bomb and kill Bugs Bunny. Then one of the children asked Mrs. Bush “Are you talking about Osama Bunny?”
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