Monday, November 23, 2009

Radio on TV!

Two weekends ago, the Cameroon's national football (soccer) team was playing the final qualifying match against Morocco for the World Cup. The number one national sport in this country is drinking beer, and the second is watching football, while drinking beer. Naturally, this was a big deal.

I headed to Dschang to hand out with Clotilde, a French girl I know. Dschang is a really fun university town about an hour or so from me. Somehow I managed to spend 15 months in the west region of Cameroon and never made it out there, so on this day, I decided to finally pay a visit.

I arrived just in time for the match to begin. We crowded in a typical Cameroonian bar ready to watch the match on TV. I've mentioned before that while I am not a fan of football, I am a fan of watching guys watching football. And Cameroonian football fans are quite entertaining in their own special ways.

The game began, yet all you see on TV was the words: Cameroun # Maroc. And the broadcaster was relating the game in gibberish that supposedly was French. After a bit of confusion, I understood that apparently the Cameroonian national television (CRTV) did not purchase the rights of image broadcasting.

Now, imagine that. I was impressed on how calm people were. While they were disappointed, their reaction was more of a "on va faire comment?" (well what are you gonna do?) Imagine Superbowl Sunday with no image broadcasting? Serious riots would go down. I did thoroughly enjoy the comments from the men, "well, it's like in the 1960's when we had to crowd around the radio and then translate to people who didn't speak French." or "welcome to Cameroon, we have Radio on TV!"

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