Ring the Gong Related Incidents

To be a bus driver in the infamous sport known as Ring the Gong is a terrifying experience. Cages separating the passengers and driver do not work-the fans are that bad. The only safe system is to remotely control the bus from a neighboring car. Even that is iffy.

Here is a sample report, courtesy of the ████████████. Such incidents happen around every game of the sport.

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-There were two buses, each holding roughly fifty fans.

-One of the buses was found lying on its side about a hundred feet off the road, with skid marks and waving tracks. Seven fans were both alive and immobile enough to have not escaped already. These were taken to the hospital.

-The other bus was intact, stopped, and totally abandoned.

-One of the control cars, as is par for the course, sped away after the accident. The other tried to speed away but crashed itself. The occupants had long since fled.

-There was no sign of overt foul play.

-The seven survivors screamed at the paramedics to take them to the game instead.

 

 

A Precedent For Ring The Gong

Have I found examples of the human body withstanding, during the course of a sporting event, multiple examples of climbing up-and then being knocked down from, a large pit, as per my fictional sport of Ring the Gong?

I have, in the form of the infamous Mick Foley vs. The Undertaker wrestling match.

Basically, here’s what happened. Instead of being in the cage, they climbed on top of the cage. Foley was tossed off and hit the announcer’s table (in a clearly planned move) that still knocked him out. Getting off the stretcher and resuming the match, he was slammed through the cage and knocked out again (with a chair landing on him for “good measure”, but got on his feet and somehow finished as intended.

(Whether or not the second fall was planned is debated-Foley denies it altogether, and Terry Funk insists it was supposed to be gradual but ended up being sudden. I have a feeling it was “planned somewhat but ended up being more dangerous than anticipated”)

What this says about Ring the Gong is twofold:

-That a person can indeed survive drops from a high altitude in a sporting match.

-That they could not continue in a legitimate sport.

Now, I could handwave it away by “padding”, or I could say that falling is indeed a death sentence for Ring the Gong players, depending on how violent I want the sport to be.

 

The Basics of Ring the Gong

For years this has sat inside my mind, being revealed only in conversation with family and friends. But now-now it can be shown in full.

I give you-the story and rules of Ring the Gong, a fictional sport I have made.

Ring the Gong was invented in 1879 by a British proto-sociologist named N. Amadeus Cobwell. Cobwell saw increased industrialization, increased mechanization, and increased automation (even in his time). To this, he theorized that the gift of manhood, the skills that allowed “humanity to flourish in its prime” would soon be lost, with catastrophic consequences for all of civilization. To counter this, he invented Ring the Gong.

The game has gone through innumerable rule changes, but the basics have not changed since Cobwell’s day. The players go into a huge pit that has padding (ideally) and netting on the sides to enable an easy climb. To score a point, a player must climb up to the top of the pit and ring a gong at the top-hence the name. At the same time, each team must prevent the players on the other team from doing the same. The players carry mallets in various shapes and sizes, and the game is very violent. Cobwell intended for nothing less.

Cobwell died playing his sport. The initial rules included two players on horseback on each team. On April 2, 1882, Cobwell was knocked into the muddy ground by an opposing player, and then trampled upon the head by one of his own team’s horses. The game went on for twenty minutes before the players even noticed his predicament, and he died several hours later.

But the sport did not. In the 1880s and 1890s, the sport continued hesitatingly. But it was not until the 1920s that it both flourished and developed into political gongism. One of the reasons why aficionados of Ring the Gong turned to political talk was because the game itself was becoming a circus. With both teams wearing identical seersucker suits, players banging the gong repeatedly, and lots of smoke and alcohol, it was hard to tell what was going on. Another was that, in the aftermath of World War I, political gongism-with its min-max philosophy, offered a way to solve conflicts.

The idea being that the state would be replaced by local communities centered around Ring the Gong teams, overseen by an international league/federation. The Gong Association was founded to great aplomb in 1919, and reached its height with the first World Season in 1932. Only seven hundred deaths happened during it.

Meanwhile, the game was forming into a genuine sport. A player nicknamed “The Mighty George” wore a distinctive striped suit-soon he founded an entire team, and uniforms developed. A rule was made-and enforced- that stated that players could only ring the gong once per trip up and that play stopped once it was rung. Positions began to develop.

From there, the unified history of Ring the Gong stops. My various concepts range from it being a slightly unconventional sport with the same focus on safety to a bloodbath free-for-all. But in all forms, teams are armies in their own right, with waves of brave-though-unintelligent fans backed by heavily armed better-trained “sweeper” commandos.
The effect of Ring the Gong on geopolitics is also varied, but the basics of the sport itself have not been-everything involves excessive violence and people climbing up pits to ring a gong and hit each other.