Sunday, December 02, 2007

Over Already?

And we had been playing so well of late! But that is the nature of this lovely but often cruel game of bocce.

The day started off on a promising note. We held off the strong bashing skills of Balls Deep and won 7-5. We all rolled well. I was the weak link and I wasn't half bad. SHR placed every ball exactly where she wanted. Dani was very good throughout and Mitch dominated after the first frame.

Too bad the fun times didn't continue into the second game. A 7-1 spanking wasn't fun. But we weren't rolling that poorly. Balls Deep rolled really well. It seemed like every single time they needed to knock one of our balls out, they did.

Game 2 lineup
Erik and Mitch
SHR and Dani

Game 3
I replaced Dani. We took a quick 3-0 lead. And then the problems began.

Balls Deep were out of balls but they had the point. We had two balls left. If we could knock their closest ball out, we could get four points and win. However, there was plenty of space left to put up a two-spot and give Rod a commanding 5-0 lead. In our last game of the regular season, Erik faced a somewhat (but it was Game 2, not 3 and we already had the point) similar situation. This is how I described the play that followed from that game:

I especially loved Game 2 when we fell behind 3-0 before tying it 3-3. Then in the next frame, we had one point already scored with one ball left. The Mamalukes had a ball very close to our closest. But our other two balls were pretty close as well. Erik looked at Mitch and me and said, "I'm going to try something crazy here."

And he did. It was crazy good is what it was. Perhaps the best shot I've seen all season. With precision, he knocked the enemy ball clean out while keeping all four of our balls near the pallino. A four-spot! The end. Erik awarded himself the Hot Rod with his lovely last roll.

With visions of that amazing roll, Erik tried it again. This is what happened. Not quite what he had in mind. Oh well, we still had a ball left. Unfortunately, Mitch tried the exact same thing. Again, to no avail. Balls Deep were on the board.

This proved to be an important momentum shift. SHR and I gave up a point. Erik and Mitch gave up another and all of a sudden it was tied at 3.

No matter. I was happy that it was only 3-3. We were very lucky that they hadn't already put us away with our three straight frames of uninspired play. But their penchant for successful bashing had disappeared at just the right moment for us and we still had a chance.

Then we started taking it to them. SHR and I put up a point and then Erik and Mitch added two more points, powered by this Mitch roll.

We felt good with a 6-3 lead. Bring on the final 8! Not so fast there. Rod has had to learn many times not to put a notch in that ol' bedpost before actually bedding the lady or two or three. Speaking of loving each other, Balls Deep were way in love with each other during the match. Lots of PDA, boys with girls, boys with boys, girls with girls, any sort of combo available. Rod wasn't sure if he approved or not even though it seems like something Rod would be into. Rod was conflicted.

Henry found more interesting things about the bocce court than the game itself.
Anyway, back to the action ...

SHR and I tried to put it away but all of a sudden - two bad things began to occur.
1. Balls Deep's stellar rolling came back when they most needed it.
2. Our luck began to run out.

After my first good roll, they placed their ball right near the pallino. SHR and I had three straight rolls all end up in the same rut. Then Balls Deep did the same thing with their next two. I was hoping they would only end up with one point and it seemed that way even after they rolled their final ball. But after measuring, they were a little closer and got two points. Every single measuring moment in this match went against us.

It went back to Mitch and Erik and they had a very similar frame to the one SHR and I just rolled. They expended all of their balls with Balls Deep having three left. Only one more needed to get closer to end our season. It was nerve wracking. This is what happened.

We got lucky again. It came down to the final frame tied at 6.

Balls Deep started with an amazing amazing amazing roll. They put their ball right on the pallino deep deep deep. SHR and I spent our first three rolls trying to dislodge the two.

It came down to the last roll. Even if I got closer somehow, they still had three balls left. But I didn't care about that. I'd worry about it later.

I rolled an excellent shot. It hit their ball, it hit the pallino. For a brief moment, I thought we would live for another roll or two and force their hand.

But it wasn't meant to be. The rollback went their way and that was it.

Ouch. I can't believe we didn't even make it to the final weekend.
Final Record: 3-4
This was our first losing season since the first season - the last time we really had to find ourselves as the season went along. It was also the last season we didn't make it to at least the final 8.
With Dancey Dance On: 0-3
With Rock On: 3-1

This was the first time Team Rod didn't win at least one playoff game. But we were really coming together at the end of the regular season so we're not going to let one loss deter us. We'll be back in 2008, fighting trim, and ready to show off any new scarves and such that we happen to accrue over the holidays.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Rods Evens It Out

That's right, ladies and gentlemen. If You Want My Bocce has evened its autumnal ledger at 3's.

Erik, Dani, Mitch, and I all rolled well and it showed in the results.

I especially loved Game 2 when we fell behind 3-0 before tying it 3-3. Then in the next frame, we had one point already scored with one ball left. The Mamalukes had a ball very close to our closest. But our other two balls were pretty close as well. Erik looked at Mitch and me and said, "I'm going to try something crazy here."

And he did. It was crazy good is what it was. Perhaps the best shot I've seen all season. With precision, he knocked the enemy ball clean out while keeping all four of our balls near the pallino. A four-spot! The end. Erik awarded himself the Hot Rod with his lovely last roll.

We started this season with an unbelievable amount of strife, tension, and anxiety. Now we are cruising. Unfortunately, we don't play again until December. Oh well, Rod will be ready. He's always ready.

Season Record With Rock On: 3-0
Season Record With Dancey Dance On: 0-3

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Team Rod on the March

Team Rod, riding high after finally winning for the first time this season, took on old rivals Boccelism last Monday night.

We went in at 1-3 and the former four-time champs went in at 1-2. Someone was going to go home sad.

Pre-game conference from the "Lisms."
Game 1
Dave and me
SHR and Erik

SHR and Erik were solid the entire game. Dave and I were a bit spotty though. Of our first two frames, we only had two good rolls between the two of us. But the two good rolls put us in excellent position and we scored a point in each frame. I had a good feeling about the match based on getting two points on the strength of only two good rolls out of eight.

We took a commanding 5-0 lead. But then Boccelism began the comeback. The closest they got was 6-5 before we put the hammer down and won 7-5.

Game 2
Dave and me
Dani and Erik

This one wasn't so good. Boccelism was heartened by their late comeback and took it to us.
7-3 Boccelism

Measuring is easier with the help of a flashlight! Boccelism always come prepared.
Game 3
Mitch and me
SHR and Erik

Boccelism oozed confidence for Game 3. But everyone knows that ooze is one of Rod's favorite words so we weren't afraid.

We all rolled well. With a 5-2 Rod lead, the lads of Boccelism placed their ball closest to the pallino. We had two left though. I was hoping that SHR could knock their ball out and clear the way for Erik to finish them off. But she took matters into her own hands and superbly knocked their ball out while at the same time nudging another one of our balls a bit closer to give us two points! And the victory!

7-2 Rod!

I took a few movies over the course of the night but didn't get the best ones - including the stellar last roll from my honey. Plus I accidentally was taking them in the lowest quality setting. Oops. Rod can't always be on top of his game.

Worth watching anyway though.

SHR won the Hot Rod. Not that the Hot Rod award has made an appearance since September but we can all hope.

Season Record with Rock as the Soundtrack: 2-0
Season Record with Dancey Dance as the Soundtrack: 0-3

We beat Boccelism for the second straight time after losing our first four matches to them. We now have won two in a row (against the champions of the last six seasons!) to get to within sniffing distance of .500.

I was hoping to find an image like this of Rod marching.
Instead, this was the best I could do.
Also, congratulations to Cobra Kai for representing well by taking the first ever Bud Bocce Cup at Union Hall yesterday. Job well done.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

May the Worst Team Win

That is what I said to the Coffee Flats Terrors before our match on Monday night.

We had stumbled to a pathetic 0-3 record this season. We had lost team members as the season progressed. And we had lost sight of the most important thing - listening to rock music while playing bocce is much more preferable to listening to techno while playing bocce.

There wasn't anything we could do about any of these things. Other than hope for the best against the defending champions, wish our former teammates well in their future endeavors, and hope against hope that honest to goodness rock & roll would be played on this night.

Game 1
Erik and Dani
Mitch and me

I was the weak link while everyone else was hot and we cruised to a satisfying 7-2 victory. We've blown 6-0 leads this season so I wasn't convinced we were going to actually win until the final point was scored.

Game 2
Erik and Dani
Mitch and Dave

Mitch and Dave were on fire! They put up a four-spot to start us off and then we bled the Terrors to death by scoring one point at a time prolonging their misery like a cat would torture a mouse or a Rod would torture a young blonde plaything in a much different manner if you catch my Rod innuendo and I'm sure that you do.
7-0 Rod!

Could this be the turning point? Maybe. Maybe not. But we continue to prove that for whatever reason and whatever personnel we throw out there, new Rodsters or old, we are a force to be reckoned with, at least, when we play the Terrors. We are their Sweet Meats (we are 0-5 against them) and we raised our record against the Terrors to an imposing 4-0 in our last four matches dating back to Summer '06.

The Video

Celebration Time!
Erik forgot to bring the Hot Rod award to the game. It hasn't mattered until this week because the Hot Rod award is only given to the MVP of the game if and only if we win. This week, the award would have been given to Dani for her stellar play. To be honest, everyone except me was a solid contender for the award.

No worries though because yesterday, Hot Tub Eric in Memphis e-mailed me this gem of a picture with the subject heading Hot Rod.
This is much much hotter than a belt buckle, don't you think?

Everyone has their rituals I suppose. Apparently, the Terrors have one for when they get shutout. I'm not quite sure what to make of this but I think Rod would be strangely excited by it.
Season Record With Rock On: 1-0
Season Record With Dancey Dance On: 0-3

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Can't Anybody Here Play This Game?

If You Want My Bocce squared off against Watch Your Balls this past Monday. I wish that we hadn't.

We fell to an ignoble 0-3 on the season. What the fuck? We are just terrible, terrible, terrible. All 6 of us were terrible on Monday night.

Five of the six members of the squad kept swinging for the fences all night to do something great. Instead, there were a lot of whiffs. Yes, there were a couple of nice doubles which were immediately followed by more strikeouts and more weak groundballs. Beth was the only member of the team to not hit the back wall at least once.

Watch Your Balls played well so no disrespect there at all. But we were abysmal. It was embarrassing how bad we were. We never forced them to make bad shots because we kept rolling hideous ones.

Game 1
Erik and Mitch
Beth and Dave
7-3 Watch Your Balls

2 of our points were scored because they gave them to us with an errant roll.

Game 2
Dani and Mitch
Dave and me
7-2 Watch Your Balls

At this point, we have to look deep within our hearts and see what we are truly made of. That is the beauty of sport.

"These are desperate times. We have to play like a desperate team. Maybe we can get lucky and get some help."

"This team has shown itself to be resilient. We needed wins the past two games and didn't get them. We need a win tomorrow."

The first quote is from Todd Helton. The second quote is from Clint Hurdle. Both were made after the Rockies lost their third in a row in mid September and were on the verge of having their season getting away from them. Since these quotes were uttered, the team has won 21 out of 22 and are headed to the World Series.

"We all feel terrible for ourselves as a team right now that we can't really close the deal. But we still have time. We're not giving in."

"It (the losses) will only make the champagne taste sweeter."

"We need to go out there and finish strong and dig down deep and really do some soul-searching because we're going to have to finish with a flurry."

The first two statements were uttered by Willie Randolph. The last one by David Wright. All there were made during the Mets disastrous last week of the season.

So what will it be? Will we be the Rockies or Mets? Can we right the ship? Or we will go down in an embarrassing blaze of defeats?

Statistically speaking, we are the worst team in the league right now. Our next match is against the best team in the league, our vaunted rivals, The Coffee Flats Terrors who will be out for my blood and the blood of the traitors in our midst.

But as Mitch pointed out, the Devil Rays seem to always beat the Yankees.

There is still plenty of season left to make Rod proud. Because right now, he's in hiding.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Urban Bocce, A Found Shirt, and Juggling

It has been a slow few weeks in Rod Land. Still reeling from our 0-2 start, we've been biding our time until our next match. We were supposed to play last week but the Notorious BRF have left the league having not even rolled one ball in anger all season. Oh well.

In the meantime, bocce fun still has been happening.

First, there was Urban Bocce '07!

Secondly, an odd Boccelism occurrence happened to SHR and me.

A couple of seasons ago, I proudly wore this shirt during yet another Boccelism march to the championship. If you notice, the shirt is way too big on me. Anyway, I appreciated the gift from Cobra Kai but the shirt was so damn big that I ended up not keeping it.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago. SHR says to me as she is going through her laundry bag, "I didn't realize you still wore your 'Stop Boccelism' shirt. The laundromat put it in my bag." I was quite perplexed because I remember throwing out the shirt a number of months ago.

It only took me a moment to realize that this wasn't my shirt and that somehow our laundromat had given me someone else's "Stop Boccelism" shirt. How incredibly strange is that? What are the chances of this happening? Does my laundromat know I play bocce from washing my If You Want My Bocce shirt and got mixed up and gave me this shirt? Very very odd.

A few days later, SHR thinks she saw a Cobra Kai member in our neighborhood. The pieces are falling into place.

Notice how small the shirt is compared to my other one. If you are missing this shirt, don't fret any longer. Just let me know and I'll return it.
And finally, who knew that Mitch could juggle? Let alone juggle bocce balls? Check it out.

My team is going stir crazy. We need to get back on the court soon for something other than practice.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

We Just Can't Beat the Sweet Meats, Part V

The less said the better. Game 1, we had a 6-0 lead and blew it.

Game 2, we sucked.

Game 1
Dani and Mitch
Erik and SHR
7-6 Meats

Game 2
Dani and Beth
Erik and me
7-3 Meats

The Hot Rod belt remains homeless two games into the season.

I've always liked the Sweet Meats but now that they've added some Phillies phans to the mix, I'm not as into this team. Yes, their theme song is still a reworked version of Meet the Mets but that might not be enough for me.

Not only do I have to put up with the Mets blowing their lead a little more each day to the Phillies but now I also have to put up with Phillies braggards badmouthing David Wright right behind me as I'm rolling?

All I have to say in the David Wright for MVP debate is this: David Wright might not be the best player in the league. But he never ever has ruined a frame of bocce by kicking the balls away with three balls left to play in the manner that the Jimmy Rollins touting Phillies fan did during this match. No, that would be more of a Jose Reyes move.

The only solace I can take in this loss is that we went from being absolutely terrible in the first match (except for Mitch) to an overall level of mediocre play in this one.

Season Record: 0-2

A movie of Dani's first roll as Rod.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Things Can Only Go Up From Here

After the controversy comes the games.

Unfortunately, Monday night's game didn't treat us so well.

Game 1
Beth and Erik (check out the Rod belt! in the picture and the movie of his first Rod roll.)
SHR and Mitch

Um, we sucked.
7-1 ODB

Game 2
Beth and Erik
Mitch and me

Much better. Much much better. Mitch kicked much ass.
7-0 Rod

Game 3
I was planning on putting SHR back in for the third game. But she liked what she saw in the Game 2 squad so she told me not to put her back in and we stayed the course.

I had a nice roll to start the game going deep. ODB couldn't get closer and spent all 4 balls. Mitch rolled the second and third balls and we took a quick 3-0 lead. Mitch remained on fire! I got way too conservative and didn't get us an opening four-spot.

When it got back to Mitch and me, Rod still had a 3-2 lead. Mitch blew us all away again with an incredible roll right on the pallino. With their three remaining rolls, ODB couldn't do anything. My first roll was not good but my second got us a point. Mitch finished the frame with one more nice roll to give us a three-spot and a 6-2 lead. Still, I kicked myself for not getting us a four-spot.

Then ODB scored three more points on the strength of a really nice last roll and all of a sudden things were scary. Still we still held a 6-5 lead.

Unfortunately, my not so good play continued while at the same time, Mitch's dominant play came to a conclusion.

ODB led off by going midrange and putting their first ball close to the pallino. Not that close but pretty close. Mitch started off and split the uprights! Right between the two balls, right to the back wall. I tried to knock the ODB ball myself which was a bad play on my end. I, too, hit the back wall. What was I thinking? Why was I so aggressive? When the play called to be aggressive earlier, I was too conservative. And now that I needed to be conservative and just get us close, I fucked up royally. Rod, I'm sorry for letting you down. Because I did.

My next roll was better but not close enough. Mitch had the last roll and again, he couldn't get closer. This left ODB in the enviable position of having three rolls to get one more point and take us down. They only needed one. Ouch.

7-6 ODB

This was a tough, tough loss. One of the most disappointing regular season losses I can think of in recent memory. But it's all good. We're getting to know each other as a team. We've got plenty of time to get better. The fact that we were as close as we were with pretty much only one good player on the night is encouraging.

But the unforgiving schedule doesn't get easier. We face the Sweet Meats in our next match. We better gel real quick. And we need to remember the Rod philosophy of playing within ourselves and not trying to do crazy ass shit unless the situation dictates. In the season opener, I was the one who forgot our cardinal rule. But I promise to remember real quick. Onwards and upwards, Rod style! Yow!

Season record: 0-1

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Story of How Sweet Touch Joined If You Want My Bocce

At the conclusion of the 2007 summer season, Rodsters Mike and Sarah decided to take a break from bocce. This opened the door for Sweet Touch. I asked him if he wanted to join our team since it had been discussed earlier back when the Terrors were deciding whether or not to stay on Saturdays or move to Mondays.

The Terrors also were up to 10 members and we only had 6 so the numbers made sense for a switch.

After a few days of contemplation, Erik decided to leave things up to fate and made a pronouncement.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

We Just Can't Beat the Sweet Meats, Part IV

Match 1: Round of 8
If You Want My Bocce vs. Boccismo

Game 1
SHR and Jim
Beth and me

We got off to a strong start by dominating to the tune of 7-2. We fell behind by an early score of 2-0 but the tide turned in frame 3 when SHR and Jim put up a four-spot with four great rolls. In particular, SHR's 2nd roll was the one that pushed us from 1 point to 3.

Game 2
Sarah and Dave
Mike and Mitch

We took a quick 3-0 lead. And in proud Rod fashion, we had some good 'ol defensive rolling in the fourth frame. Leading 3-1, Boccismo was on the verge of a game changing 3-spot. But Sarah knocked the pallino back a little and they only scored one point. We still had a 3-2 lead.

Boccismo tied the score at 3 before Dave and Sarah added two more and the M & M Boys added one. But then Boccismo caught fire and took a 6-3 lead. But we weren't fazed. Dave and Sarah put up a point to get us to within 2. And then Mike and Mitch finished it off with a beautiful 3 spot.

Final 4 action!


Not against the Sweet Meats again! That squad has Rod's number.

Game 1
SHR and Jim
Mike and me

We fell behind 6-0 in ugly fashion. Down 1-0, Mike and I had 4 chances to get a ball closer to the pallino and missed all four. The Sweet Meats capitalized and put up three. Then SHR and Jim gave up two more.

But the game wasn't over just yet.

Mike and I put up a four spot powered by Mike's great first roll.

Down 6-4, Team Rod felt the comeback coming on.

On SHR's 2nd roll, she placed the ball right on the pallino. Woo hoo! On the Sweet Meats second attempt to break it up and the last roll of the frame, they gently nudged the pallino. It was measuring time. After much deliberation, it was deemed that the Meats were closer by mere millimeters. We had one last ball left. It was a very very tough shot and Jim couldn't quite put it in there.
7-4 Meats

Game 2
Beth and Mitch
Sarah and me

No matter because we were pumped for Game 2.

We took a quick 4-0 lead powered by a clutch roll by Beth in the first frame and a good roll by me in the second. In fact, my roll in the second frame was millimeters short of giving us three points rather than just two. This would come back to haunt us.

In the next frame, we went for the kill. On our last roll, Mitch put up two points for us. Unfortunately, they had two left and used them well. They scored two and halved our lead.

In the next frame, Sarah's great last roll was wasted when they had an even better roll and scored another point.

No big deal. Mitch and Beth put up two more on Mitch's clutch last roll.

With a 6-3 lead, I was excited. Surely, we'd put them away and we'd be on to Game 3.

But it wasn't to be.

All four of us shit the bed. No gold records for this year's Rod squad.

In the first frame of our undoing, Sarah started it off well enough. But the Sweet Meats put one of their balls right on the pallino. With my first roll, I tried to knock it to no avail and hit the back wall. Then Sarah didn't do much better. I knew I needed to protect us but my 2nd roll was way too short and not even close. The Meats scored an easy two points. I felt lucky that it wasn't more and that we still had a 6-5 lead.

The second frame of our undoing was awful. The Meats put the pallino in the back. Mitch and Beth spent all four balls not getting close. Mitch rolled the last ball of Rod Summer Season '07 and made the same mistake I made in my last roll of the season - he failed to protect us by putting one of our balls fairly close. They closed us out with the next roll and it was already time to start planning for the fall.

Game 2
7-6 Meats

I'd by lying if I said that I was rooting for the Terrors against the Sweet Meats. I'm competitive and I liked the fact that all of us from that original championship team still had only one trophy. Plus, the Sweet Meats have never won so I wanted to root for them as well.

But like many a Floyd final match, one team simply dominated. The dominant rolls that we saw against us were nowhere to be found against the Terrors. But that's the way it goes. Congratulations to the Coffee Flats Terrors - two time champions.

They might have had an easier road of it than it looked when the seedings were announced - no match against the 5-1 Bourbon Balls, a forfeit, and a Brian-less Boccelism. But that doesn't matter. They came to play and played well. And the way that some of them were rolling in the final three matches, it wouldn't have mattered who they played.

The league has had only two champions over the last 6 seasons. They are clearly the teams to beat. Next season should be interesting.

Not to mention, there are going to be some major changes in Rod Land. But more on that later.

6 important rolls of the day:

Check the Terrors' blog for more.

Summer Season
Final record: 6-3
Regular season: 4-2
Playoffs: 2-1

Monday, August 13, 2007

One Down, Three to Go

A shorthanded If You Want My Bocce entered the playoffs hoping to avenge a regular season loss to Tchauzinho, one of two teams that handed the Rods a loss this summer. I think we were the only team they even beat!

Game one started with Beth and Dan at the far bathroom side and me and Mitch at the other end. We won the coin flip and opted to begin the match on the far side and with the red balls. We went down 0-1 after the first frame, but then came roaring back as M & I put up a three spot. In the next frame it was the long game, with the pallino squatting right by the wall. DMR rolled a great ball which somehow picked up speed towards the end for a near miss as it threaded the green ball and paulie (Don't get mad at me for typing that. First I typed pally, but I didn't like the way it looked.) to hit the wall. On his next roll though, he pinned the paulie to make a bocce sandwich, but red was just closer! One more point for Rod! M and I put up point in the next frame to bring the score to 5-1. In the next frame, Beth rolled a great knock out shot with either our 3rd or last ball which forced Tchauzinho's hand and resulted in another point for the Rods. I threw the paulie in the next frame and though my first ball was pretty mediocre, the Tchau Tchau's could not get closer and we took the game 7-1.

For game two, Dave swapped in for Dan. Sometime during this game we find out that the Tchau Tchau's are Mets fans, too. Carlos Delgado hits a two run home run in the 8th inning to give the Mets some breathing room in their game vs. the Marlins. Members of both teams are happy, but alas, one team will see their smiles turn upside-down at the end of the match.

The Roddies went down 0-2 in the first frame but then Mitch saves us with a great roll with our last ball in the next frame to get us on the board. The Rods then tie it up in the next frame thanks to precision knockout rolling by Nellie. We then take a lead and I think I did something good cause on the napkin upon which I scribbled my notes, I wrote "4-2 SHR." The Tchauzinho's decide to go deep in the next frame and take two points to tie up the game. However, SUJTCH (or MIJAN, take your pick) continue to be in sync this game. We put up a three spot to take the game and the match. Rod 화이팅!

Game One:
Love Touch & Hot Legs
Downtown Train & Young Turk

Game Two:
Love Touch & Handbags and Gladrags
Downtown Train & Young Turk

Up next are Boccismo who advanced to the round of 8 because neither of their potential opponents decided to show up. What are the retributions for teams that do this? Unless they make an effort to call the bar or let their opponent know they will not be able to make the match, they should be shown the door. The games can go way long as it is (the 1PM match between VVV and the Gowanus Iguanas went an hour and forty-five minutes!). It's selfish and rude to waste other people's time.

Addendum 8/14: It has come to my attention that some people can't see the special message I typed in Korean in the line above GAME ONE. I wrote "Rod Fighting" with fighting spelled out phonetically in Hangul but Jim just told me it looks like "Rod ???!" Boo.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Even the Brooklyn Dodgers Finally Beat the Yankees

Fresh off our thrilling victory over the Terrors of Coffee Flats, If You Want My Bocce suited up last Monday against the 4 time champions -- Boccelism.

We've played them well in the past (other than the terrible championship match) but went into the game an abysmal 0-4 against them.

But so far this season, the U.S. Steel of bocce have not been dominant. Whether they suffer from winner's fatigue, are confused by the new court, or are merely toying with the rest of the league, who knows? But they entered the game a highly mediocre 2-2. They were ripe for the picking.

But not at first. They took a quick 4-0 lead and things were looking dicey really quickly for Team Rod.

But then ... but then ... The tide turned to all Rod!

Jim and SHR put up a three spot and all of a sudden it was close.

And before they knew what hit them, Mike and Beth finished them off with four big points!

Game 2 was ugly and better not discussed.

Game 3 started in the same similar fashion as the first game - with Boccelism taking it to us. We found ourselves in a 3-0 hole before we even knew what hit us.

And what would a match against Boccelism be without a little controversy? At one point, Mike was measuring and accidentally moved the pallino further away from our ball and closer to theirs. The captain of Boccelism admitted that the pallino moved slightly but one team member who our team already had a run-in with in the past insisted that the pallino never moved. I'm not sure of all the details but it ended up not mattering much. And to be honest, what are the rules if your team is the one who moved the ball by accident? Regardless of when this happened during Game 3, it had no bearing on the outcome of the match because Mike had a great shot to give us a point anyway.

We scored two in the first frame of the comeback and we were on our way again. Mitch and Jim tied it at 3. Mike and I added two more points to give us a 5-3 lead.

And then it came down to Jim and Mitch. Jim led off with a perfect first roll. So perfect that Boccelism missed the next four shots. So we had three balls left to try to beat Boccelism for the first time ever! Mitch missed. Jim missed. But they were only missing to set up the dramatic final shot. In my hysteria, I forgot who rolled the winning shot (even though I knew who was taking it mere seconds before) and had to verify during the celebration who had actually rolled it.

We raised our winning percentage against the champs to a sparkling .200.
Game 1
SHR and Jim
Beth and Mike

Game 2
Mitch and me
Beth and Sarah

Game 3
Mitch and Jim
Mike and me
Mitch texted Dave (Boccelism's number one fan) this message.
It was a great night all around. I even made peace with Bashley of Po-Town.
Final regular season record: 4-2

The celebration continued onto the streets of Brooklyn. This is next year!

Friday, July 27, 2007

An Epic Battle

Wow. Both Games 1 and 3 went to the final frame tied 6-6. I think that I might have had a heart attack if the second game had been super close as well.

When it came down to the final frame of the night, I felt that it was such a shame that one team had to lose. Thankfully, Team Rod prevailed.

Game 1
Mitch and me
Jim and SHR

The Terrors took 3-0 and 5-2 leads and things looked bleak. But they just couldn't put us away. We took the opening and pounced. We all had some really clutch rolls in this game. They still had a chance to beat us at the end but couldn't do it.
7-6 Rod

Game 2
Beth and Mike
Dave and Sarah

The Terrors busted out with a 4-0 first frame lead and that was pretty much it. We got absolutely destroyed by a score of 7-1. I saw almost all of the game action during the match. However, one of the few that I missed involved a bit of controversy. Apparently, on a Beth roll, Team Rod thought that the ball did not hit the back wall. However, the Terrors called that it did even though at first, one of them said that it didn't. I'm not exactly sure what happened since I missed it but it got kind of loud there for a spell.
7-1 Terrors

Game 3
Mike and me
SHR and Jim

If Game 1 was tense, this one was even tenser because of the high stakes involved. It was back and forth. The Terrors took a 6-5 lead. I ended up placing our red ball right on the pallino. The Terrors had two balls left to knock ours out and win. Kaci almost placed her ball closer but couldn't quite do it. Then Chris knocked that green ball out of the way and we lived for another frame.

We were down to our last ball and the Terrors controlled the point. The pressure was on Jim. And he came through with a great roll. The last roll of the night fell to Dani. She rolled well but couldn't quite do it. Rod Wins! Who's going to update Wikipedia?
Thank you to the Sweet Meats for the many cheers of "Rod! Rod! Rod!"

So if you have the patience, check out these two movies of the night's festivities. They are both about six minutes long. I had no intention of making a movie at first. I was simply taking a few short movies to keep track of the action for blog purposes. Eventually, I decided to just keep taking movies of all the important action. If only I can learn how to take movies and roll at the same time!

Games 1 and 2

Game 3

Next time, I'm just bringing a notebook.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

We Just Can't Beat the Sweet Meats!

It is really kind of sad, ain't it? The two other times that we've played, we destroyed them in the first game only to fall meekly in the next two games.

Before the game, Cap'n Jim (oh yeah apparently the summer team is called the Jimbo's Sweet Meat All-Stars or something) told me that despite our two squads being friendly that they were going to decimate us.

I wasn't afraid though but I suppose I should have been.

Game 1
Mike and Jim
Dave and Sarah

Things didn't start well as we quickly found ourselves in a 3-0 deficit. But then Dave and Sarah quickly tied it and we were on our way. That is until the Meats answered that with a three spot on Mike and Jim to take a 6-3 lead.

However, we weren't done. No way. Dave and Sarah notched another point and we were only down by 2.

Then things got interesting. Jim started the frame with an exquisite first roll. The Sweet Meats spent the next four balls trying to knock Jim's ball out of the way. They did not succeed but did set up a nice wall around the pallino where it resided on the right side.

Victory was within our reach! We had three balls left to get two more points but it was a tricky shot. Mike and then Jim both tried to sneak it in on the left side but couldn't quite do it.

With one shot left, I was hopeful that Mike could get us another point to set Dave and Sarah up to win it. The score would have been 6-5 at the very worst if Mike was not successful.

However, Mike (goaded by the Coffee Flats Terrors in attendance) went for the kill. It was an easy shot he kept saying afterwards. I was blissfully ignorant at the other end of the court about the debate going on before Mike's roll. So when his roll came barreling down the court and smashed into the wall of red, I was caught unawares.

Unfortunately for Rod, a one point green advantage turned into this.

Game 1
7-4 Sweet Meats

Game 2
SHR and Beth
Sarah and me

But we didn't let it faze us. We took Jimbo and his squad out quickly by a score of 7-2. All of the women rolled well and they carried me because I was pretty mediocre. SHR had one of the best rolls I've seen in a long time early in the game that set up Rod taking a 5-0 lead.

Game 3
Same as Game 2
It was back and forth at first. 2-0 Meats, Tied, 3-2 Meats, 4-3 Us

But the tide turned in the frame where we took the lead. My good rolls from the beginning of the game had completely deserted me at this point. Despite an excellent roll by Sarah to knock the pallino back to set us up for a killer round, I hit the back wall and we only got two points. We should have had three.

Somewhere during this time, many of the Coffee Flats Terrors who were supposedly rooting for us early in the match accepted bribes from the Sweet Meats to root for them instead of us. Oh well, anything for a quarter I suppose. We now know how cheaply some of the Terrors' loyalty can be bought.

Whether it was my bad rolls, Rod having an off night, or the quarters being bandied about, we completely fell apart - all four of us.

The Sweet Meats scored three points in the next frame and then finished us off in the next frame by only throwing one ball. The funniest part of this was that Tom Sweet Meat had no idea that the game was over and thought that we had become so disheartened that we had simply quit. I think he thought that we had one more ball left or something? Anyway, it was yet another loss to the Sweet Meats but we'll get them back in the playoffs! Maybe.

Game 3
7-4 Sweet Meats

Summer Record: 2-2

Monday, July 09, 2007

If You Want My Bocce vs. Bourbon Balls

We have a winning record again!

I was out of town last week but I made sure to listen to the Faces last Monday morning as a tribute to Team Rod.

We only had four folks on the squad (Mike, Sarah, Jim, and Dave) but they took down Bourbon Balls in three games.

Not sure what happened exactly but I figure someone has got to update this thing.

After having avenged our playoff loss to Po-Town in a recent match, we look to take down the last team to end a season of ours, The Sweet Meats, in our next match.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Hot Legs Angers Po-Town

First of all, much like I refuse to call the third baseman for the Yankees by the name of A-Rod, I refuse to call our Monday Night opponents Po-Po. With that out of the way, I've got to say that I have nothing against this team. I mean, other than the fact that we were the only team who beat them in the regular season last year but they pretended that they had no idea who we were. And, of course, losing to them in the playoffs was no fun either.

However, at this point, I think that they hate me. Or at least the captain does. Oh well. I wasn't trying to get in their heads or nothing when I suggested that we start the game as we waited for their 4th member to show up. Captain Po-Town did not seem excited by the idea but was willing to do it. My reasoning was that there were two more games after ours so we should just get going. I never suggested a forfeit or nothing. But since it was already 5 minutes past start time, I figured why not just start the first frame? We did and perhaps I unintentionally got in their heads? Mitch and I took an immediate 3-0 lead.

And then we waited for their 4th team member to show. It was only a few minutes more which was okay with me. At least we had started and given him a chance to show up on time and not delay the match further. He was completely out of breath from running which I guess helped our cause. SHR and Beth continued the run of excellence. Actually, all four of us did and we took Game 1 by a score of 7-0.

Game 2 saw us take a quick 5-0 lead. There was talk about where to get dinner. I began to feel guilty for rushing things since it was barely past 8 and we were about to dispatch the enemy in quick order.

Um, not so quick. Things began to fall apart quickly as they sometimes do when we try to get too fancy rather than play nice and easy, Rod-style. Rod knows you can't rush a good thing and sometimes our squad forgets that.

With a 6-3 lead, the Po-Town squad had a chance to put us away with a four-spot. Luckily, they could only put up three and it was up to Mike and Sarah to give us the win.

But Po-Town was too strong and they prevailed by a score of 7-6. So much for an early dinner.

Game 3 was tense. We took a quick 4-1 lead before things got scary again. It was back and forth until finally we set it up for victory. Po-Town needed to knock our ball out of the way to avert defeat.

I set up to take a movie. Captain Po-Town was not happy with me. I understand the way she feels and I'm sure she thought I was going to take a picture with the flash. Still, it was funny to be chastised by her and then by my squad.

So I moved back and documented the last shot. Victory to Rod!

Game 1
Mitch and me
SHR and Beth
Rod 7-0

Game 2
Mitch and Dave
Mike and Sarah
Po-Town 7-6

Game 3
Mitch and Mike
SHR and Beth
Rod 7-5

Summer Record: 1-1

Later in the evening saw the Coffee Flats Terrors play Boccelism for the first time ever. The game was an intriguing one as it pitted the last non Boccelism champ (more or less) vs. the fourpeaters.

It wasn't even close. Boccelism got rattled and fell to the Terrors in two games.

The winning shot by Balgavy.

And when it comes right down to it, how could a team with a member with such a fine 'stache lose?
By the way, I have officially named this new fixture at Floyd. His name is Rod.
Finally, as we all know, our team hasn't been playing all that well recently. But last week, while I was at a math workshop I stumbled upon a very good omen.

We were learning about different activities on how to use Cuisenaire Rods. The instructor put up this sign.

Who cares about the Virgin Mary appearing on toast and other such nonsense? I've never believed in that stuff. But when I saw this lovely creation, I knew that the Bocce Gods had spoken. And it spoke the name of Rod.

Summer Season!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

We Don't Play Again Until 6/25

In the meantime, feast your eyes on this gem of a picture. Thank you to Hot Tub Eric for sending it my way.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The Year of Rod Might Just Be A Mirage

Because as much as I hate to say it, we kind of aren't very good these days. We hit a peak sometime in mid winter of this year and it has all been downhill since.

Last night, we started off slow, gained some momentum, almost won, and then fall apart yet once again.

The new court plays very differently which I think will be a good thing for us in the long run but last night messed with my head. Either that or the three pints I drank in quick succession right before rolling did the trick.

Game 1 stunk.
We lost 7-3.
Team: Mike, Sarah, SHR, Beth

Game 2 was crap for a bit. But after spotting our opponents a 5-0 lead, we came roaring back to a 7-5 victory.
Team: Mike, Sarah, Mitch, me

As team captain, I knew what had to be done - remove myself from game action because I was killing us, KILLING us I say. I had planned on taking Mike and Sarah out but they were hott so I left them in.

Things looked rosy for awhile. With a 5-3 lead, we had two balls to close the deal. Unfortunately, we couldn't add the points to take it. Then we lost 7-5. Oops.
Team: Mike, Sarah, SHR, Beth

The victors - Tchauzinho

All we can do is keep plugging away and maybe good things will soon happen.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

The Year of Rod Took a Slight Detour and Will Officially Commence in June

In the brief lull of another season ended too early, I present to you some scenes of what proved to be an insurmountable blow to our collective egos - the doubleheader defeat of Team Rod in our last regular season matches before the playoffs.

We may have lost but this scoreboard still makes me laugh.
Someone wants to get their twenty dollars worth. Either that or they were very angry.
Even though we ended up succumbing to the onslaught of Watch Your Balls in the second game of the sweep, I really like this exciting clip as they tried to put us away. They didn't on this shot but it only delayed the inevitable.

Summer season is right around the corner. Get in the mood with a singalong.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Downtrain Train

A Rodster from the very beginning, Mitch took season two off. Season three saw him become our number one cheerleader and season four brought him back to the fold.

Name: Mitch
Age: Double Triples
Birthplace: Baltimore

Began playing bocce: yes

What got you into the sport: peer pressure

Where do you find the inspiration: the back of cereal boxes

Turn-ons/Turn-offs: winning/losing

What do you look for in a set of balls: consistency

What is your overall bocce philosophy: Western

Famous Quote: Some teams are born great, others have greatness rolled upon them.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

If You Want My Bocce Stalls in the Final 8 for the Second Straight Season

The day was bad. Real bad. We got spanked by the Po-Town Po-llinos. Nothing against them considering they were the number two seed but we really showed nothing. We beat them handily back in the glory days of our undefeated early part of the season.

After beating them, we ran our record to 3-0. After that, we lost 4 of our final 6 matches to finish with a mediocre 5-4 record, easily our worst mark since our first season of Spring '06.

In game 1, we got swamped 7-1. In Game 2, after falling behind 5-1, we came back to tie it at 5 before succumbing to an ignoble 7-5 defeat. I have nothing against our fine opponents but I definitely got the sense from some of them that they completely thought that we had no chance against them. Unfortunately, we didn't show them otherwise. So it goes ...

But at least a former Rodster showed up with his baby son Henry. In fact, it was a double Henry day as Dave also brought baby Rod veteran, Henry, who witnessed his fourth or so If You Want My Bocce match.
Ugly scoreboard to the right, cute baby to the left.

Mitch and I took off immediately after the ugliness to go see a movie. We came back in time to watch the number one seed and vaunted rivals Coffee Flats Terrors blow a 5-0 3rd game lead to Watch Your Balls. The Terrors might have been the last best chance to take out Boccelism.

The scene during the Watch Your Balls vs. Boccelism match. Unfortunately the "Stop Boccelism" shirts didn't do much. Thanks again to Cobra Kai for the shirt.

Boccelism destroyed Po-Town in the finals. Oh well, at least it wasn't Boccelism vs. ODB yet once again. Watch the movie of the last shot of the season - a movie that I like to call Fuck Boccelism.

Ezra Terror (not to be confused with Ezra Lism) excitedly points out that the Coffee Flats Terrors trophy is still bigger than any of the FOUR Boccelism trophies. Oh Ezra.
And what can only be described as the perfect description of the disorganized and half assed way that the whole league is run (is it too much to ask for the 20 bucks we were forced to spend to actually have chalk provided so we don't have to go out and buy some? Or how about new balls that aren't chipped?), Cobra Kai won the award for Best Blog of the Spring '07 season. Nevermind that their last post is from November 2006. Did Floyd even bother to check the blog? I suppose it makes perfect sense since Floyd doesn't exactly update its website all that much. I swear it will read "Coming Soon" in the photos section on their site forever. Kaci had the best heckle of the proceedings when she cried out, "Ross doesn't even remember the password to his blog!"

To be honest I think it is pretty funny that Cobra Kai won this award. It really cracks me up. Still, I wouldn't have minded having the award proudly displayed next to my Coffee Flats Terrors championship trophy. For the record, this blog has documented every SINGLE match we have played over the course of four seasons.

Ross shows off the goods.
Summer season is just around the corner. Stay tuned to this space over the next week, I have two more posts in me as I try to catch up on old business.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

If You Want My Bocce vs. Bourbon Balls

Team Rod stumbled into the playoffs having lost two in a row and three of our last four. No matter. We are proven champions when it comes to scaring teams away from even showing up during the playoffs. Veni Vidi Bocce didn't show up because they knew of the carnage that awaited them if they did.

So we confidently strode into the round of 16 without breaking a sweat. Bourbon Balls stood between us and making the round of 8 for the third straight season.

We roared out of the gate and took a quick 5-0 lead in Game 1. Bourbon Balls had no chance. Um, that is until we completely fell flat and lost 7-5. We had our chances to do some things but just couldn't do it.

Game 2 didn't start any better. We fell behind 4-0. What? 11 straight points against us? No matter because of what happened next.

Mike and Sarah took 3 points and then SHR and I finished up the job with a 4 spot. For those keeping score - Couples Skate Night was indeed a rousing success in its IYWMB debut.
Game 3 saw us go down by a score of 5-2. But that was when we started showing our true grit. Mitch's stellar rolls pulled us to within 1 point.

Then things got really interesting. Mike and Beth were rolling well in the next frame but Bourbon Balls were rolling even better. Or so they thought.

We each had 1 ball left. BB had their red ball right up on the pallino. If we didn't gets ours closer (which seemed to be an impossible shot) they had one ball left to close us out. I was praying for Beth to pull out the old "Knock the pallino" off the court and restart gambit. But she did something just as amazing. Her roll was perfect and it sandwiched the pallino between our green and their red. Bourbon Balls couldn't quite believe it. They dropped their last ball in fear and decided to start again.

Mitch and I scored a point to tie it and then Mike and Beth scored another to take a 6-5 lead.

In the next frame, Mitch and I were rolling okay but nothing special. We had one ball left and Bourbon Balls had what seemed like 34 left but it might have only been two or three now that I really think about it. With the precision we've all grown to know and love, Mr. Downtrain Train took that fucking pallino back, back, back Chris Berman style all the way back on his last roll of the frame.

Now it was up to Bourbon Balls to try to avert certain defeat. They couldn't do it with their first efforts. So it came down to the last roll. And this is what happened.

Time to measure. Too close to call.
The verdict? All Rod!

The Po-town Po-llinos are up next. They are the number two seed and they only lost one game all season. They even took down Boccelism giving the three time champs their first loss since July. We should be very very afraid. But guess who gave those Po-llinos their only loss all season? You want a hint?

Thursday, April 19, 2007

It Takes Two

Well Rodders, I'm glad I haven't had the chance to post write up for our regular season-ending doubleheader until now. Instead of a long-winded discourse of shoulda, coulda, wouldas, I'm saying, ON TO THE PLAYOFFS!

However, for those keeping score at home here's the ten second recap. We took game one against the Sweet Meats before they came back and tenderized us in games two and three as they did in last season's playoffs. In match two, we went down in two games to Watch Your Balls. In both matches, we put ourselves behind the pallino big time, falling behind 0-6 before mounting furious comebacks that just felt short.

YL the YT

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Who does a girl have to screw around here to get a Rod update?

Last Monday, March 26th, IYWMB faced off against NKOTB (New Kids on the Bocc). They’re a great team, full of raw talent. In fact, on any given Monday they could beat ANYbody out there. And Boccelism, if you’re reading this, I hope they beat you last night. Not so much as an anti-Boccelism thing (some people may make fun of you, but I think it’s cool that you guys have decided to wait – you only lose your virginity once…make sure it’s with someone special!), but as a pro-NKOTB thing. I think they’re awesome and would really love to see them come into their own, but not against Rod of course.

To be honest, I don’t really remember any details from that match. Here’s what I DO know though:

♥ Jim, the Balltrap, was captain for the day. He did an excellent job. He was cool and collected and all of his pairings were extremely complimentary to one another. My favorite pairing of the evening – Young Turk and Downtown Train rolling from the South side in game one. They were unflappable and always managed to come up with the big shots.

♥ I think we won the first game 7-5, or maybe 7-3. Representing Rod were the aforementioned, with Handbags and Gladrags and Reason to Believe at the other end of the court.

♥ Again, not exactly sure about the second game’s score. We either won 7-3 or 7-2. I rolled with Hot Legs from the South side, with the Balltrap and Sweet Little Rock'n'Roller on the North side of the court. In general, I find patting oneself on the back and acting like a self-congratulatory ass to be poor sportsmanship and totally gross, but I’m going to do it anyway because no one else from my team could make a post this week. I was fucking awesome. If you’ve ever met me, you know that I love to bank, but last week I tried something new – straight shooting. And you know what? IT WORKS. My precision shooting earned me the coveted RVP award and I’ve been staring at that album cover all week. In examining it, I saw some amazing wardrobe details that I never even noticed before. Rod enjoys the finer things in life and knows that it’s all in the details.

So that’s it. We were off last night, as the entire league should have been for the first night of Pesach and mass brisket consumption. Next week we have a doubleheader – Sweet Meats at 7:30 and Watch Your Balls at 8:30. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Full Hearts, Clear Minds Can Not Lose!

I'm not even sure if that is the line from Friday Night Lights or not but that is what I kept saying last night. Anytime things looked bleak, it was time to bring out the Full Hearts, Clear Minds Can Not Lose mantra. But what works for a fictional high school football team might not work for a Rod inspired bocce team.

Week 4 saw us facing off against the cream of the crop, the New York Yankees of bocce, Boccelism. The three time defending champs. The team that hasn't lost since a time when an actor named Johnny channeled the spirit of a guitarist named Keith to take him box office gold in that long ago time of yesteryear, July 2006.

Was Rod fazed? Fuck no. We knew we could take this team. And we were excited that Dave made his first appearance of the season to cheer us on and he even brought his future bocce superstar son to take in the proceedings.

And when I was told right before the game that two of the members of our worthy opponents had recently met Sir Rod in person just a mere two weeks ago, I began to really angry. What does it mean when the three time champs get to meet Rod before the glorious teammates of If You Want My Bocce get to meet him? Fuck you man! You win three championships in a row AND you get to meet Rod Stewart? Is there nothing left for us?

Fuck yeah, there is. And that is take down these Rod stealing mofos!

Game 1
Jim and me on one end. SHR and Beth on the other.

Fuck! Before we knew it we were down 5-1. We all were rolling decently but that Brian is fucking uncanny. Every second shot he rolled was amazing. Sometimes you have to simply tip your hat at such brilliance and that is what I do to him.

But if there's one thing that doesn't scare Rod, it is coming from behind. In fact, Rod prefers it.

Before they knew what had hit them, we had tied the score at 5. SHR made a precision strike at one juncture to add another point to our tally and we were on our way.

But before we knew it, Boccelism regrouped and finished us off 7-5.

Game 2
Mitch and Adam on one end. Mike and Sarah on the other.

This game was all Mike and Sarah. Literally. After a disastrous first frame that set us back 4-0, Mike and Sarah went to town. They scored two quick points to get us back in the game at 4-2.

Then Adam atoned for his first frame mistakes by stealing a point back from Boccelism when they had two points. Instead of facing a tough 6-2 score, we were only down 5-2. That was key, I believe, in keeping us focused. Full Hearts, Clear Minds Can Not Lose!

Mike and Sarah notched two more points and the score was 5-4.

Again, Mitch and Adam rolled well but were only able to keep Boccelism from notching the final nail. The score was 6-4 but gosh darnit Full Hearts, Clear Minds Can Not Lose!

Mike and Sarah donned their scrubs again and again commenced on their surgical strikes and finished off The Evil Empire with a threespot. Final score 7-6.

For those keeping score at home, yes, Mike and Sarah did indeed score all 7 points. It was beautiful. Yes, Mike and Sarah took care of things on their end but to Mitch and Adam's credit, they played very well after the first frame. They didn't fall apart after the terrible first frame. They played nice defensive ball holding Brian and Co. to only two points. Two points that they had to fight and claw for. Two points only, allowing Mike and Sarah to do their thing. It was Rod at its best.

Game 3
Rod at its best is not what I can say about this game. I still believe that Full Hearts, Clear Minds Can Not Lose but for a variety of reasons, I'm not sure if Team Rod went into Game 3 with the clear minds aspect of the Friday Night Lights mantra.

Mike and Sarah didn't have a chance to shine but at least they only gave up one point. Jim and I, on the other hand, didn't do so hot. Yes, we did allow 6 points. It was over and done with in three frames. Completely terrible. 7-0.

But overall, I'm happy with the match. We played tough and came from behind twice. Both of the first two games could have gone either way. And I firmly believe that if we had somehow held Boccelism to only one point in that embarrassing last frame where they put up a fourspot on us, we would have come from behind to take the damn thing. Because Rod does like it from behind. We have proven that again and again.

For now, our record falls to 3-1 but I'm proud of my fellow Rodsters. All heart.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Rod loves Jews and Christians alike - especially the hot ones.

As we enter the second full week of Lent, Rod would like to share some tips from his old friend, bocce mentor and spiritual advisor - Father Guido Sarducci. And no, Rod has not given up tapping ass for Lent.

Also, I noticed that there is league play on Monday, April 2nd. That's the first night of Passover for chrissake! I hope someone at Floyd remembers to hide the afikoman from the littlest bocce player that night...

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Rod Now 3-0; Prepare to Get Hit with Train Analogy

Rod is 3-0 in the season after defeating the Po-town Po-llinos last night. But victory didn't come easy.

Have you ever entered a subway station only to hear the announcement that, in order to go your stop of choice, you'll first have to take an uptown train to the next express station and catch a downtown train going back?

That's what last night was like. First, we kept blowing our initial shots. But like true hot Rods schlepping to the uptown express stations, we went long distance on our subsequent rolls. So much so that we handily won the first set 7 to 1.

The crap-first-shot-but-great-subsequent-shot routine carried through to our second set, where we racked up 5 points quite quickly.

But then our downtown train got stuck in a tunnel and we had to watch as the Po-llinos crept past us on the other track. And oh, how their triumphant faces annoyed us as they stared through the scrachiti-etched windows of their victory train.

But we were patient, and soon the conductor, Cap'n "Hot Legs" Dan, had us heading in the right direction, ekeing out victory one point at a time, holding the Po-Towners off by playing it close and conservative.

RVP: Jim "Ball Trap"
Final (Rod vs. Po-town): 7-1, 5-7, 7-2

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

If You Want My Bocce vs. The Notorious BRF

Week 2

Oy vey. Team Rod knew that we might have some problems with games running late when we decided to make the move to Monday nights. But we thought that a few missed moments of sleep on Tuesday mornings was a small price to pay to ensure that we escaped having to play the Coffee Flats Terrors again anytime soon.

When we looked at the schedule for this past Monday, we realized that we had our first of 4 (!) 9:30 matches out of 7 overall. "Oh well, maybe it won't go that late," we hoped. Plus we were heartened to see that the Human Rain Delays of bocce, Boccelism, weren't playing on this night. So how late could it possibly go?

The answer - plenty late.
At 10:50, we suited up for our 9:30 match against the Notorious BRF.

Game 1 Squad: The Balltrap Jim, Love Touch Beth, Sweet Little Rock and Roller Sarah, and Young Turk SHR.

The BRF rolled really well and showed us that they were going to be a formidable opponent. We weren't getting the lucky rolls and things looked bad. They scored three single points to take a 3-0 lead.

Then The Balltrap and Love Touch turned it on and put us on the board for the first time of the evening at 3-2.

But the rest of the game just didn't go well for us and we fell 7-3.

Game 2 Squad: The Balltrap Jim, Downtrain Train Mitch, Reason to Believe Mike, and yours truly, Hot Legs.

We finally began to hit our stride. Team Rod rolled inconsistently in Game 1 but had shown signs of life by the end of the game. Still, it was too little too late. In Game 2, it was too much too soon for the ladies of the BRF.

Reason to Believe brought the confidence. The Balltrap continued to hone his ballhandling skills of the night, Downtrain Train fortified his position as Mr. Unflappable in only his second match back in the green, and I didn't completely suck.

Game 2 Score: 7-1 Rod
Movie of the final shot where the BRF needed to get closer to the pallino to avert defeat and couldn't quite pull it off. It almost breaks my heart to watch the excitement on the face of one of our opponents as she hopes for the best.

Game 3 Squad: The same as Game 2 but Young Turk SHR subbed back in for Downtrain Train.

We all rolled well. Hot Legs got his game legs back, The Balltrap dominated, and RTB and Young Turk cruised.

Game 3 Score: 7-2 Rod

Co-RVP's: The Balltrap and Reason to Believe. As Rod inscribed on the hardware, "You guys did it - together!"

Season record: 2-0

No one dominated. We all made some mistakes but we all also made at least one very good shot when push came to shove.

My favorite shot of the night: In Game 2, Reason to Believe Mike had accidentally turned a 1 point frame into a 2 point frame for the BRF. Calm, cool, and collected, Downtrain Train made quite the impressive shot and almost gave us back control. It didn't work out that way but he did save us a point. It was early in the game, we had a 4-0 lead, and two points in that situation might have really given the BRF the fortitude to come back on Rod. Instead, it was merely 4-1.

The game ended at 12:20. Way way too late. I still don't understand why Floyd can't expand to having league play on both Mondays and Tuesdays. I also don't understand why they can't turn up the heat a little. The $5 Yuenglings aren't bringing in enough cash to pay the heating bills?

Today I was able to reschedule two of our three remaining 9:30 matches for Monday, April 9 at a more reasonable hour.

For the record, this is what Tom of The Sweet Meats had to say about our 4/9 match. "I'll of course have to reprint the posters I'd had made up to advertise our rematch of last year's playoff battle, but this is what marketing budgets are for."

Truer words have never been spoken.

Just make sure you choose a beautiful picture of Rod for your posters.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Rod is Rock & Roll's Worst Nightmare

You might think that I'm referring to outfits like this, right?But I really am referring to last night's opening night action that pitted If You Want My Bocce vs. Rock & Roll Nightmare.

Match 1 of the Year of Rod

Almost a full showing. We were eight strong for Match 1. We were quite pleased to see Mitch (Downtrain Train) roll back into Rod Station for '07. Skippy who once pretended he wanted to be a Rod even showed up to cheer us on.

The only missing Rod was Handbags & Glad Rags Dave who was otherwise preoccupied with his two-day-old son. That is right, Dave and Jen are the proud parents of a future bocce All-Star. I don't even know the kid's name yet so until I hear otherwise, his name will be Baby Rod.

Dave and Jen join former Rodsters Oh God I Wish I Was Home Tonight Beth and Lethal Dose of Love Alex in parenthood. If you need further proof that '07 is the Year of Rod, there have been two babies born to Rodsters just in the past three weeks. Top that, the virgins of Boccelism!
Anyway, the first game went well. Young Turk SHR kicked much butt with some precision rolling and we won 7-0. During the middle of the first game, we all were wondering if the mystery man of If You Want My Bocce was going to show up. And he did. Ready to rumble. All hail Gettin' Hungry Slice.
The second game featured some fine ballhandling skills by the aforementioned Gettin' Hungry and the triumphant bocce return of Downtrain Train. To cap off his return to If You Want My Bocce, Downtrain Train nailed the winning roll. Final score: 7-0

RVP: Young Turk for setting the tone of domination for the night. Young hearts be free tonight indeed!

Monday Night: You have officially been put on notice that 2007 is the Year of Rod.