The Sporting Life

Posted by Brandon |

Tonight I went for a drive around Ventura to look for a pickup game of basketball. It was a beautiful afternoon and I couldn't stay inside, I was bored because Death? is on call tonight and I badly needed some exercise now that my Wednesday night game has been on the fritz.

I checked out five or six empty schools and parks before turning into the new Ventura Community Park, a massive piece of land that features a pool and water park, tons of soccer fields and a ton of space to build new softball fields (what it really needs is a minor league ballpark, but that's a different story). I was disappointed to find that it doesn't have any basketball courts, but as I was heading toward the exit I drove by a bunch of guys throwing around a rugby ball. My curiosity peeked, I decided to stop and check it out. The next thing I know, I'm playing touch rugby with a handful of adults and a bunch of high school kids. They are trying to form a high school team and in the future they may form a men's side but for the time being they just need players every Monday and Thursday so that the kids can learn how to play. That's cool, I'm game.

Despite the fact that I'm not that athletic or very good, I will play any sport. So far this year I have competed in...

  • Softball (I've played either softball or baseball nearly all my life)
  • Basketball (nearly all my life)
  • Soccer (never played until last year)
  • Dodgeball (played in only a handful of games)
  • Rugby (played for half a season in college)
  • Lazertag (never played until this year, it's harder than you would think)
  • Flag Football (haven't played since 7th grade until this year)
  • Tennis (Death? and I play for fun, so I don't know if you call that "competing")
And if I could find a local group that plays these games and I could fit it into my schedule, I would so play...

  • Golf (I played once when I was like 10)
  • Cricket (I have no idea how to play, but would love to learn)
  • Lawn Bowling (Oxnard has a club that offers lessons)
  • Australian Rules Football
  • Racquetball (I just found out about a league at my gym!)
  • Disc Golf
  • Ultimate Frisbee
  • Beach Volleyball (I'm getting this organized as we speak)
  • Lacrosse
  • Kickball (North Hollywood has a league that plays on Monday, but now I'm playing rugby on Mondays. Decisions, decisions.)
  • Curling
  • Wiffleball
And I would play just about any other team sport, if given the opportunity. The only sports that I wouldn't play are Ice Hockey (I'll never be able to skate) and Water Polo (I don't swim very well).

Maybe this should be what I do. Maybe I've heard my calling. I should start searching out people who play weird sports and spend some time with them practicing and playing and then write about my experiences, maybe even film it. It could be kind of like a Dirty Jobs kind of thing. Actually, it would probably end up being more of a Huell Howser thing with me asking all sorts of silly questions.

Either way, I hope ESPN "The Ocho" is listening.


Jesse said...

Try kemari:


Basically, imagine playing hacky sack with a ball (roughly volleyball size) made of deer and horse skin.

Of course you could always try Sumo...

Replicant said...

i need to play more sports! i'm actually going to try and organize a vintage baseball league here in tulsa and play 1860s rules w/ period equipment. i know you'd be up for that.

Hilary said...

I've always been anti-golf even though my whole family plays. However, I went out yesterday and LOVED IT! I think I may take lessons.

Brandon said...

Jesse - holy crap, that looks crazy. I'm horrible at hacky sack but I think I could play Kemari. I would be kickass in sumo.

Replicant - I would love to play on a vintage baseball team. I actually contacted a guy who ran one in Toledo when I was in college. I was going to go out but I ended up taking a class at the same time that they practiced. Now I wonder if there is a team around here somewhere.

Hillary - I just don't have the money to play golf regularly. I wonder if there is a little Par 3 course around here. That's usually cheap and fun.