Proposing a bit of dressing-room research

As both E and I run about-- not literally, of course, considering the temperature here is nearing 100 degrees Fahrenheit and E wears nifty heels and I don't run unless something large and scary and bear-like is chasing me (and I don't have my Darkliquid-ian M4 Rifle) getting things ready for summer sessions and watching football (me) and teaching (her), it appears PTSD has been a bit neglected. I would love to tell yous this is going to be a well-thought out academic post but, no, it's actually going to be a bit of a filler while I wrestle with ideas about a paper (jointly-written) that's slowly being eroded of its joint action-ness and reverting to a dominant single self. I guess I'd be all right if I'd been the dominant single self but since I'm not, it's rather annoying. Or, as annoying as I can get in this heat--even mustering up annoyance is far too much effort.

So, where's the filler, yous ask? Here it is: it's an article on what type of government seems suited for World Cup victory.

The thing is that I'm not sure an adequate statistical comparison can be made, throughout the years, without adding one important (to me, anyway) factor: most of the top players of almost all the teams in the 2006 World Cup play in the European leagues. Most of them play in the top teams of the European leagues. Yous could probably say most play or will play for Chelsea (Essien, Robben, Ballack, Shevchenko, Cech, Cole, Terry, Crespo, Drogba, and so on). This was not the case even a decade ago and it is bound to impact, if not the result, then the way in which teams train and play among themselves.

Or, does it not? I don't know. That's why I'm proposing a research project (preferably to be done after I finish dissertating--perhaps during the next World Cup). If most of the top players are playing in leagues in Europe, it would be a great study (apart from leading to loads of free football-watching in the name of "research") to see how the various teams' dressing rooms and training arenas are organised, what types of groupings form, who allies with whom, and so on.

Also, statistical analysis of World Cup winners/government types would be fairly useless as the data set is fairly small (the Cup only started in 1930 and is held every four years with a 12-year break during World War Two*) and the "government type" variable (with sub variables of the different types of government) is not likely to have many examples as the Cup is played fairly infrequently. Therefore, you'll get something like the throwaway result that the blog post noted above has--the best type of government to have if you want to win the World Cup is to be Brazil. Fun but useless information in case Nepal (to give one example) wants to have a five (or fifty)-step plan to win the Cup in the future.

Therefore, other types of research, especially my proposed research on how teams form groupings and coalitions among each other would be more useful in describing boundary-formation and identity-constructions. Do European-based players hang out together? How about age? Or language?** How do various groups represent each other (or the management)? I propose this research would be far more useful to International Relations and research on self/other boundary-makings than an analysis of regime types. Regime types are just so old these days. Besides, who wouldn't want to hang out with players during the World Cup, watch trainings and matches and get to call it work. Now, I just need to find funding.

* I wasn't sure how many Cups had been missed during WWII so I went to check on the FIFA site where I found this useful bit of news:

"Throughout the Second World War the Italian Vice-President of FIFA, Dr. Ottorino Barassi, hid the World Cup trophy in a shoe-box under his bed and thus saved it from falling into the hands of occupying troops."

I'd love to make a "one useful Italian" comment about that but that might offend PTSD readers.

** As an example, listen to Spain's Xabi Alonso speak when giving interviews in English. After a couple of years in Liverpool, he drops into Scouse-speak at times.


At 6/21/2006 1:53 PM, Anonymous serena said...

interesting...who knew that people would postulate and pontificate on these topics.

how was terrorism conference? PRIYA?

At 6/21/2006 1:53 PM, Anonymous serena said...

BTW, PRIYA, contacted the MFA contact via email...no word yet, though i did write a lengthy email...so may take a while for a response...

Thanks again PRIYA

At 6/21/2006 4:10 PM, Blogger Priya said...

Oh, shut it! Yes, she's rather slow via email, I realise (the MFA person). Hope she gets back soon.

People do pontificate on these things: I just spent half an hour, almost half of that discussing chi-squares and baseball and the applicability of such methods to football (if only I had the time :))

At 6/27/2006 1:06 PM, Anonymous serena said...

LOL you no like mentioning your name! LOL :)) PRIYA>!


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