Sport > FWD


Published: May 1, 2010

As is often the case on the 30th day of the month, I'm on 30th street in San Diego enjoying the good times involved in 30th on 30th. However this time, it's my birthday. I can't tell you how happy I am that an entire street throws a party for me. There are even a few people here I sort of know. So it's good.

As I'm out stumbling from beer 5 to beer 6, I check my trusty iPhone (no not a product placement) and notice that I have an email about FWD from Flickspin. Flickspin Word Department? Had I used to many words and not left enough the other kids? Nah, couldn't be that. Oh wait, I'm hep to the FWB thing...ah, Friends With Disabilities perhaps? Diseases? Hrmm. I was going to have to break down and read the email.

Turns out, it was the Feature Writer Delegation. Best as I can tell, I'm the feature sports writer here. That or they just do this on writer's birthdays to prank them into writing another story. If so, I'll say this. Very effective.

My first act as feature sports writer was to try to con my brother into coming here to write something, anything to take the pressure off me. The only way I win a writing contest is when I'm the only contestant. It also helps if I'm the judge.

So now that we have determined this is clearly an admin error, let me get on with the show. Since I'm the sports guy with ADD, I start a new sport every six months or so. Surfing took me 30 years from the time I got the idea until I actually tried it with my co-surfers Brittany and Not Brittany. That was a storied day. As was my latest intro to a new sport. This took about 30 seconds from the time I knew it existed until I got started.

To set the scene, I'm on the road teaching in the Midwest. Two groups of students asked me to join them after class. One was meeting at 5:30 the next at 7. Share and share alike is the motto in those parts. Good solid people back there. Anyway, I go to the 5:30 dinner and drinks and think that may be enough for me. I'm wrong as I find that one of my students had lost her ID card. It was a student from the 7 o' clock group. One of the guys at the 5:30 table had it. Great, I knew this was the universe calling me to action. Turns out this class had a Brittany and a Britinaya. Of course it was Brittinaya who had lost her card. As soon as I realized this night would involve another 'Not Brittany', well, I should have seen the writing on the wall.

I take the card to bar two and deliver it. The organizer of this outing happened to be an extrovert of diminutive stature. Had he been shipwrecked, The Skipper probably would have called him Little Buddy. So we'll go with that. LIttle Buddy is drinking a Belgian Trippel. Darn fine quaff, I have one myself. From there we head to the Daquiri Factory. Here the kids are drinking frozen somethings with added shots of 151 and 190 proof alcohol. After drinking those they all agree that they are effectively blind. Rather than drink another and go deaf, they decide that going dancing at a place up the street would be fun. I had dancing on my to do list as being next up. So that plus alcohol, I'm thinking ok, why not. As we exit, we are advised by the staff to avoid a dive bar that is on the way to the dance place.

We pass the dive bar and the doorman sucks in Little Buddy with some cut rate beer story. The others object, sort of, but being drunk, the objections were forgotten as soon as they were uttered. Next thing we are in the bar and Little Buddy says "Hey they got beer pong here, wanna play Professor?"

"What is it and how do you play?"

"It's a drinking game"

With that brief explanation, I was playing on a team. It was me and Little Buddy vs. Not Brittany and somebody else. Not Brittany was making bounce shots so I tried them. After few unremarkable efforts Little Buddy tells me "You don't have to bounce them..."

The next ball I approach like a basketball free throw. I should mention that while the official beer pong game calls for a 16 ounce cup, we are playing with 8 ouncers here. This a pro table, I later learn. Anyway, I take aim and deliver what is the beer pong equivalent of nothing but net.

One onlooker mentioned that it was like seeing Tiger Woods pick up a golf club for the first time at age 51 and smash a 300 yard drive down the center of the fairway. It was that or something about a porn star. Anyway, the point was that I was clearly an undiscovered talent, the guy that could have taken beer pong all the way to ESPN 2, had I just found the game sooner in life.

This game was a rout. Little buddy had a pretty strong game himself. I think I caught fire and took out 5 of the first 7 cups, then I had a carpal tunnel flare up, or maybe I splashed beer in my eye, but Little Buddy came on strong at the finish to close them out.

Another team appeared. I should mention that little buddy and I put together could barely add up to the weight of an NFL lineman. Standing across from us was a strapping lad who had the body of an NFL linebacker. And I could tell he had once upon a time been the proud owner of a fade away jumper that would have made Larry Byrd proud. Ah these Midwesterners and their hoops. We were in for a scrap.

But once again we jumped out to an early lead. I caught fire in the opening salvos. But the opposition never dropped more than a cup behind. It came down to the wire and Little Buddy came through strong to close it out with a shot that caught the back rim and rattled home. We did some knuckle bashing thing that probably passes for acceptable male bonding. I was 2 and 0 and it was way past my bedtime, so I excused myself to go get some sleep so I could teach the next day. I expect the vacuum was felt for miles around as I departed.

And yet, right at this moment, a mere five miles from me in Pacific Beach there is a 64 person beer pong tourney starting. It is open to everyone "from beginners to professionals" as the advertisement says. I feel the pull, really I do. But I have the responsibilty as the Sports FWD guy to sit here and write. Yes that is part of why I'm sitting here. But the biggest part is that I have the opportunity to retire undefeated.

Which is where I'm going with this.

Any Comments?


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