Jai-Alai Question of the Week


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#16: How come EVERYBODY knows that jai-alai is fixed?

Posted on November 30, 2003 at 11:14:59 AM by Tiger

I think the main problem, at least in the US, is that the game itself is a virtual unknown. It's just so........'foreign'

We have, what, 285 million people? I'll bet (there I go again) that 100 million have never even heard the word. How about another 100 million who have heard the word, but haven't the foggiest idea what it is? 75 million who know it's some kind of game, but that's all. Can you see where I'm heading here?

Now, we get into the area where there is at least a glimmer of recognition. Try these numbers (my guesses):

10 million know it's played with a ball and isn't an American game
5 million have seen a news clip/sports highlight or read an article
2 million have a degree of familiarity with the game
500 thousand have seen a live performance (ever)
50 thousand could name at least one active pro
10 thousand would say they 'understand' the game
5 thousand have ever visited a fronton website
2 thousand have ever put on a cesta (even for a photograph)
5 hundred have ever visited a discussion forum

Not only is it unknown, there aren't any facilities. When I was growing up, we were always playing some kind of 'wall ball', didn't even need a flat wall
Kids always played off the school wall, but just see how long you'd get away with whacking the wall in your local Wal-Mart parking lot today (e.g., Fronton Norwalk).

The amateur facilities are virtually gone, and that's in Florida or Connecticut, where the game is at least somewhat known. I don't think you'd get a very lively discussion in Dubuque, Iowa, for example. Those people will never even see the word. I can bore people to tears with my jai-alai chatter, even in Connecticut where we had 3 frontons for 25 years. You'd think I would run into someone who was interested.

So, how come everybody KNOWS it's fixed?

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