Recently, I started watching the Moto GP series. The major reason is that it’s telecast after I get back from work Sunday nights. The simple explanation is, Moto GP is Formula One for motorcycles. Of course that contains Valentino Rossi and many very skilled riders most people, including myself, do not know.
I am no rev-head. I rate cars by their practicality and consider motorcycles way too dangerous. But it was me that was sucked into the exciting world of motorcycle racing. The coloured flares, the tension of tyre choices, the plans of the riders and their skill in throwing those death machines around a track at speeds way over 300km/h.
Right Moto GP Time, Right Moto GP Chanel
It was on and available to me right when I did not know I needed it. There is not much on after 9PM on a Sunday night. It is the reason I have Netflix. So I can watch when I want to. I just happened to find the Moto GP on at the right time. It triggered my memories of watching Wayne Gardiner and Micheal Doohan win world motorcycle championships.
Hungry for the next race when I got home from work the following Sunday I could not find it. It was in England at Silverstone and was not telecast because it was rained out. I was a bit disappointed and I have checked the schedule for the next race to come. I will be ready next time.
This made me wonder what else was on free to air that I could watch. Unfortunately if you want sport in this age of Foxtel and other paid services you will be disappointed. Like me not everyone can pay for all of these individual services. Like the tree falling in the woods, if it is shown only on pay-tv does anyone really see it happen?
The FFA cup
Most football playing nations have a huge winner takes all competition played between clubs from around the nation. Australian Soccer has the Football Federation Australia Cup. In this competition all teams from amateur and professional leagues have a chance to win. While the professional teams are expected to win the Cup, it does not happen all the time.
In the round of 16, Melbourne Victory (last seasons A-League Champions) lost 3-2 to a local Sydney club, APIA Leichardt Tigers. For those who follow the A-League the gravity of this loss is impressive. For those who lack understanding what do I compare this loss to?
Japan beating South Africa in Rugby. Which happened in the previous Rugby World Cup. Did you know about that? Ok. What about Scotland defeating England in cricket. That happened this year.
It would be like the Melbourne Football Club winning their first final in 12 years. That happened Dees fans. Stop pinching yourselves you were not dreaming it. For the APIA Leichardt Tigers they are pinching themselves too.
Have You Been Living Under a Rock?
If you followed the AFL you would know about Melbourne’s win against Hawthorn. If you do not people look at you like you’ve been living under a rock. The expectation is that this information should be known by everyone. Unlike who the current Prime Minister is. Which is no longer asked by Paramedics to those with concussions because it changes too much.
At Melbourne Victory there will be a level of embarrassment, but not the embarrassment it could have been. Imagine if soccer was THE football code and the match was live and free to air. The A-League is supposed to be Football Australia’s Premier competition. Only four A-League clubs remain in the quarter finals. How many will be left in the next round? Will it really be that big in the news cycle anyway? September is Finals time for both the AFL and NRL. Even if the A-League sides get knocked out will anyone know of this? Or will they be out scanning the form guides for the Melbourne Cup?
Hope and Love Overshadowed
Like the Moto GP and the FFA Cup the Christian message of Hope is over shadowed. On Christmas it is out shone by the presents and Coca-Cola’s Santa Claus. Even Rudolph gets his own movies that are played free to air. The Die Hard movies are venerated more than Christmas Carols and lets not discuss the Easter Bunny.
It is all too easy to point the finger at the other narratives which are in ascendance over the revelation of Jesus Immanuel, God with Us. Even the recent rise of a Christian Prime Minister is one that is not mentioned positively. We no longer have free to air access to the national dialogue. Like an obscure sport hidden late at night or early in the morning our narrative is kind of known but not common knowledge.
Christianity has been obscure before. There have been many times when the Church has been disconnected from power and I see this as a great opportunity. Jesus told the rich and powerful they have their comfort now. Jesus came for the lost and lowly. Those called sinners, outcasts and unclean. For those who discover this Jesus it will at the right place and the right time. Where they will know we are Christian’s by our love.
Phillip Hall delivers pizza by night and when not watching Netflix or scanning the Moto GP schedule is preparing his application for Masters research at University of Divinity.
Phillip Hall has been too long in Melbourne to see AFL in the same light as those back in Fremantle. East Fremantle born and bred, he would love to see the Dockers back in the eight. But would settle for just beating West Coast twice a year.