Sometimes, I wonder why I do things. I guess being childless and single, you have to find things to pass the time, and so when people ask what you did, you have something to say.
Yesterday, it was Kickball. Yes, the same game that children are playing in schoolyards everywhere (I hope. Or else they're just getting fat.) I had not played Kickball since the 3rd grade, and I can say without any shame that I stunk back then. Truly stunk. In fact, my teammates eventually put me at pitcher because I was so bad at catching the ball, but even I could roll the thing (Except to those girls who would always throw it back, screeching "Too Bouncy!") In fact, the pitching role was one I took pride in because at least I could be useful somehow. I certainly wasn't much help on offense, that I recall.
Still, I had fond memories of playing Kickball back then. So, when I was invited to play in the local Social Boston Sports league, I said, "Why not?" Sure, I haven't played in a couple decades, but I'm bigger and stronger and smarter now. I must be better at it.
No, sir. I still stunk. In fact, my skills may have eroded over time, for at least back then I had some desire to win. This go-round, I just wanted to have a few yucks and get out of the house on a Sunday. Well, at least I had a few yucks.
As was the exact case when I started playing in the BU softball league a few years ago, I thankfully am on a team that would rather lose and have fun than win and pummel their opponents and look like they aspire to one day make it to the World Series of Kickball and be on ESPN 2 after the Hot Dog Eating Contest. No, I was on a team that decided after we were destroyed 8-0 that our team name should be the Hang-overs. And I am very grateful for that.
It's not that the Hang-overs didn't try. We did. We caught the ball when we could, kicked it when we had to, ran when we had to, and laughed when we wanted to. But there's trying, and there's trying. Our opponents were trying, trying to embarrass us and build up their fantasy stats while they did it, I guess. they were running and stretching before the game, while the Hang-overs were trying to wrestle up 9 people. At one point, their first baseman fielded the ball and rather than running over and tagging the base with his foot, happy to get the out, he leaned over and lightly touched it with the ball, just to shove it in our faces that he was so good, he had all day to get that out. And then, next inning, he did it again! Arrogant ass. I hope we play them again just so I can kick him instead of the ball. Also, our opponents had a strategy. they determined (obviously from watching hours of video) that if you kick a ground ball to the 3rd baseman, there is virtually no way for him to throw the ball over to first base to get the out. The ball is just not made to be thrown that far. So, they essentially bunted every pitch until they had the bases loaded, and then someone would kick the thing into the outfield and at worst they get a sacrifice fly, but that hinged on our outfielders actually catching it.
Sound strategy, even if it did make them appear to be the world's biggest wusses. but they needn't have bothered. Nobody on our team really cared enough to attempt to thwart them, including me. But the kicker (Pun!) is that they probably went home patting each other on the back and thinking about how awesome they did, all the while laughing at us.
Well, I got news for ya, superstars. The joke's on you.