There’s a certain pleasure in doing something out of character, especially when it surprises those closest to you.
I remember some years ago how stunned a friend was to discover I loved Aussie rules football and fanatically supported a – now sadly-disgraced – Melbourne team. Or when another pal found out I boisterously sang along to Patsy Cline on long car trips. I guess nothing in my general demeanour had prepared them for this. Apparently I look more like a theatre-going, classical music lover than a yobbo in the outer who also listens to overly sentimental C&W music.
So recently, when I had another opportunity to
#30 Do Something Out Of Character
I decided to run with it. There I was in Bowral, in the New South Wales Southern Highlands and there was the Bradman Museum. Bingo!
Now I confess to finding cricket yawningly boring, but with so many aficionados of the game out there, perhaps I’m missing something. Could a visit to the museum convert me? My first surprise was discovering that Don Bradman wasn’t a tall man, if his bronze statue is to scale.
Clearly cricket is a great sporting leveller where skill and practice can trump developmental deficits
And the words of the great man were so inspiring that…
…I began to feel my life, and my character, may have missed out on something very important.
Of course, there’s a quaintness about the Don and I don’t just mean his cable-knit jumper. His noble exhortations don’t quite sit with today’s players’ tendency to relentlessly sledge their opponents and to sneer at the losing team. Not to mention all those match-fixing rumours prevalent on the international circuit…
But perhaps if I could get a handle on all the obscure terms used in cricket, like mid-on, mid-off, silly point and leg slip, not to mention cover point, I too could begin to serve my nation with courage, honour and humility.
Delightfully, the museum caters for absolute beginners, and thanks to this magnificent mural, I’ve learnt so much about cricket that I’m almost looking forward to next Summer’s season and the development of some truly magnificent personal character traits.
But the best bit of the visit?
Mentioning later to a friend who knows me well that I’d been to the Bradman cricket museum and having her say, ‘You? Visiting a cricket museum? You’re joking!’