Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Playing with balls

Last summer, I was inducted into an Adult Kickball League. Yes, Kickball…eight year olds play this game. This year, some friends (abet YOUNG friends like 25 year olds) decided to round up people for another kickball team. Aptly, our team name was “Balls Deep”. I think it is a prerequisite that your team name involves some sexual innuendo that school children won’t get (what am I talking about, kids these days are whores and probably know more about it than me). Other team names were “crouching tiger, hidden balls”, “the motorboats”, “where my pitches at”, and “suck my kick”. Ah ha ha, I can’t say that last one without cracking up.

We were sponsored by a bar that also was hosting a lewd t-shirt contest. Everyone was allowed to put something on their shirt back. Many just chose their last name, but some decided to use it as an entry for the lewd shirt contest. You can guess, the lewdness involved more obvious sexual innuendos (“sac bump’in ass” for example) and one guy really took the cake by putting “I fist minors” on his shirt. Yeah, that went too far…especially since our games were at an elementary school playground.

The season produced many good stories …like when the ball went flat (someone kicked the shit out of it). The pitcher tried to bowl the ball across homeplate and it just ended up stopping midway. The next time he held on too long and lobbed the ball over the backstop fence. We had to run over to another game and borrow their ball in order to lose…I mean finish the game.

Hands down the BEST story of the season occurred when we had SUPER UMP. This guy was mid-50’s and super serious. He wore those “bike” brand short shorts that gym teachers used to wear in the 80’s and a formal league t-shirt tucked in. Before the game started, he called a managers meeting and we immediately that he was going to be trouble. He imposed all the rules…I mean ALL OF THEM! I kicked two foul balls, and he called me out which came as a shock because usually the umps give us four or five more tries (also the umps are usually in their 20’s and realize this is an eight-year-old’s game). Also, he wouldn’t let us cross home plate when we kicked which was practically impossible if you wanted to get a running start at the ball. In the managers meeting, he said “any unruly or unsportsmanlike behavior will get you ejected”, so of course when it was obvious we were going to lose anyway, we tried to get thrown out of the game. At first it started with excessive swearing. If someone got out, a chorus of “f-that”, “bull-s”, and “mother-f-er” would issue from the bench. One tiny 94lb girl who looks like a 12-year-old, struck out and then cursed like a sailor to the ump (hell I was impressed). When that didn’t work, the guys tried to accidently (right) hit the ump with the ball. They would wait till the runner rounded third towards home and then chuck the ball full force at the home plate area (aiming high) where the ump was positioned. There were a few times the ball came close to hitting its mark, but the old guy is quicker than he looks. Since that didn’t get people ejected, the boys decided to pull out all the stops. Erik, one extremely tall guy (like 6’-4”), slid hands first, belly down, into home. The opposing team pegged him in the calf with the ball just after his hands grasped home plate. Everyone on our team was yelling “SAFE SAFE SAFE!” but Super Ump called him out. The dugout erupted and half the bench cleared to run over and yell at the ump. People were kicking dirt on the ump and swearing in his face. Erik got up and was covered head to toe in dirt (it was a REALLY dusty field and he even had dirt in his eyelashes, like Pigpen dirty). He yelled out “this is horse shit”, grabbed home plate and then launched it Frisbee style into the outfield. That was about the point when I dropped to the ground clutching my sides laughing so hard. Seriously, it was painful laughing THAT HARD! The other team was also rolling on the ground laughing. The ump explained the ball hit Erik far from the base and therefore he couldn’t have crossed home. Our captain yelled saying Erik was tall and the end of his legs could very well be seven feet away from his outstretched hands. Erik then reenacted the scene (yes he really did dive back into the dirt) and our captain nailed him in the ass with the ball. After all that, still no one was ejected! Best game ever!


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