Thursday, July 07, 2005

Your Questions Answered

Anonymous asks:
I need to know exactly what the bean bag tournament is and I was kind of hoping for a recap of how you got to the quarterfinals. Maybe over the all star break since you wont have a game to write about. Oh, and have you listened to British Sea Power at all?
I'm not sure if it's simply a Chicago thing like 16 inch softball and Italian Beef sandwiches, or if it's more of Midwestern thing in general, but I never played bean bag until I got to Chicago. It's basically a variation on horseshoes, or jarts (which was a totally awesome game as long as you didn't get impaled by a jart). You usually play with four people, two teams of two each. Partners stand on opposite ends of the court, or field, or whatever the hell you want to call it. You have four bean bags. You throw them onto an inclined board that's about three feet long and two feet wide with a hole about five inches in diameter near the top/back of the board.

If the bag lands on the board and stays, you get one point. If it goes in the hole, you get three points. There are probably other ways you can score it, but in our tournaments, the teams cancel each other out. In other words, if I get one on and one in, and my opponent gets two in, he/she gets two points (six minus four). You generally play to 11 or 15. At the block party I go to, we try to have guy/girl teams, but there are always more guys than girls, so there ends up being a couple of guy/guy teams. They have to play each other in the early rounds, so you can't get two guy/guy teams in the finals. Last year I was on a guy/guy team, and we had an epic choke in the semi-finals. We were playing to 11, and we had a 10-0 lead. We proceeded to lose 11-10.

This year it was pretty uneventful. A lot of people were out of town, and the weather sucked, so attendance was poorer than usual. My partner and I won our first round game pretty handily. The next round was the quarter-finals, and we got smoked. I think we lost 15-0. We lost to the team that eventually lost the championship to my former law school roommate/current co-employee, and the sister of the guy that invites us (she had home field advantage, as she lives at the house where we were set up for block party). I was disappointed in my performance, but I'm going to blame that on the wet weather. Also, I was drinking more heavily than usual in the early part of the day, so I was buzzing pretty good. And the bags were much heavier than normal. And the boards sucked, too. Given enough time, I can come up with more excuses.

The winners generally are required to spend their winning ($1 per person entry fee) on pitchers at the bar where everyone ends up at the end of the night. I can't comment on this year's winners, as one is underage, and the other bailed before being forced to pony up for beer. I'll try to give him a chance to defend himself.

With regard to BSP, I've listened to the new album maybe once, but it didn't grab me right away. I'll try again. They're a band that I know is in my sort of 'genre' I guess, but for whatever reason, I've just never got around to listening to them. I don't think the first album is available on Rhapsody, so if that's the one I should be listening to, I may be out of luck.

As for the All-Star break, I have something special planned (note to self: plan something special for the all-star break).


Sean said...

You can even play it online!

Hilariously, they call it "Cornhole."

Seitz said...

We played it Saturday at a bachelor party and I heard someone refer to it as cornhole at that time.

I kicked ass that day. Won four straight games before I had to leave for while.