Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Catching up...a little

The most notable difference between playing in Santa Cruz and Princeton is the quality of fields. It was not until now that I realize how pampered playing on those fields week after week makes you. Watered regularly with grounds crews tending to them and their divots. Even the upper fields with swamp patches are head and shoulders above all of our practice fields.

Washington Rd. -
Hard, hard, and harder. Splotchy grass and more dirt than green grass. Can't where turfs because they slide like old hightops on hardwood. Cleats just hurt your feet after 4 hours, but atleast they grab the crabgrass on pivots.

Mercer -
The rolling hills of Mercer County. I surprised we haven't had more injuries playing there. It just isn't fair to expect a receiver to run up and down hills at full speed and not fall over. Evidence Spanish on a wide open huck just laying on the ground in the endzone. Stoopid.

Edgely -
It is what it is. It rained yesterday before summer league and just ended up with more solidifying concrete characteristics. It doesn't get muddy, it just sets.

Hence my most recent injury. While our team was discussing whether one of my hucks was goal worthy I simply fell over about half field. Bingo...bango, a hole is there to thwart my habit of walking upright. Now a mildly sprained ankle forces me to adjust the workout schedule 'cause it needs that rest.

This moves into the pros and cons of playing summer league. The possiblity of injury worries me. Players who range from complete novices to a couple of club players is dangerous. You never know when you are going to find some punk college kid who wants to prove himself against the local talent. I know, cause I've always been that kid. They make agressive layouts and play ridiculously hard when I'm simply there to drink, catch upline dumps, and throw hospital passes into the endzone. The first injury of the season was non-contact, but potential of collision related injuries frightens me.

There are some good things about SL though. I love having somewhere to go, throw a disc around for a couple of hours, and then open a cooler of beer. I have a hard time thinking of many ways I would prefer to spend a summer evening. I also still enjoying teaching the basics of the game to people who want to learn. I don't get frustrated by people who want to learn the game. I was happy teaching a basic offense, cutting, and timing in our game last night. I couldn't care less if we win or lose, I just want others to learn. Isn't that so heartfelt.

On that note, we have a complete rookie woman on our team who stands is going to be a bright point on our season. For those of you who know my long time friend Lauren, it is her little sister Kelly. We recruited her b/c we had the potential of winning free shit if we brought in a novice woman. I like free shit and I like raffles, alas I won nothing.

I got to witness someone who didn't know the rules and regulations that bog some many people down about ultimate. She just knows sports. She knows how open spaces works, and how to not let someone else keep her from doing what she wants. She knows how to assert herself in a given situation. She is coming in with the fundamental desire to just WANT the disc. She caught more open in-cuts, and swings than the women who had been playing for years, cause she was simply assertive.

It is just one of those things I love about ultimate. If you just have no fear of getting yourself into a game, you can dictate things on a field. She did it and it was her first time ever on a field. This bodes well for the rest of the season. High fun potential.

Oh yeah, and I dug a new garden for my mom.
Fresh tomatoes, eggplant, and habaneroes coming this fall at a table near me.

Friday, June 1, 2007


I do indeed dislike Stanford. They stick in my craw.

Friday, May 25, 2007

7 parts random

There have been 7 comments, must mean that a critical mass has been reached. With this type of readership how could I be a one-hit wonder. My desire is to pick a theme to which I can stick for the duration of a complete post. This ability eludes me. There is no particular point to the existence of this space, thus it is difficult to pick out the thing with which I can fill it. In honor of everyone of your comments I will pick the first 7 disparate things that come to mind starting now...

1) NYU women's team went 1-2 on their first day of Nationals competition. Good for them to reach the pinnacle of college ultimate, but I wanted them to be the story. Just like they were out at College Vegas many moons ago. I like an underdog, especially one there where there is any sort of connection. Time is not up, step one is to be in prequarters.

2) I could be on a ridiculous road trip from PA/NYC to Columbus, Ohio right now. Instead I choose to stay home and go to practice tomorrow morning, and move out of my current house over the weekend. The company and booze was almost enough for me to forget the rest of my commitments for a weekend. JP, that was a shout out to you.

3) Practice tomorrow. This season I'm ten times more excited to be at any practice or tournament. I no longer feel like I'm on the bottom rung. The perception may be entirely inaccurate, but that concerns me considerably less. I've put in the work this season, and it pays dividends every weekend. Saturday is the driving force for me to get out to the track at least 4 times a week, either for a leg circuit, track workout, or core exercises. Doubling the frequency of workouts from last season has given marked increase in my desire/ability to create a spot for me on the playing field.

4) My ultimate career has subtly shifted over the five years of competition. I snuck in and swindled my way into a lot of playing time freshman year out in SC. A lot of this has to do with my entire lack of conscience concerning my physical well-being. I threw myself around and got Ds. Then leadership responsibilities came. I needed to lead by example concerning fundamental ultimate. I suffered a number of rather harsh injuries, so I didn't play nearly as reckless. Now I get to do both. Pike needs people on defense willing to stick their neck out there and make plays happen. I forgot the most fun aspect of defense is taking chances that no one else expects. Go big or go home. After a turnover I can go back to the fundamental ultimate thing. No turnovers and want the disc. I like this mental switch.

5) Less beer and meat. I've been making significant strides in giving up my red-blooded Americanism. First, I went back to being a vegetarian a month ago. Could be happier. I'm sticking to it this time. There shall be another post on all of the reasoning behind this. Less beer as well. Talk about needless calories/carbohydrates in our diets. Drinking beer has probably been one of the biggest obstacles to my being in peak playing shape. I still need the alcohol since the world scares the dickens out of me, so I'm working on my wine-ology. Soon I will be a connoisseur.

6) Brings me to my father. He does need a blog. I would read it, as would everyone else that knows him. However, his writing/editing process will make this impossible.

7) Moving out. That is one of my other tasks for this weekend. Mixed feelings about this. Monetarily it will be a sound decision to take a year with the parents. I don't make much money. Rent = no savings. However, living where I need a car for nothing besides ultimate has been nice. Oh well, that ship has sailed. It won't be for more than a year, since I need to go back to school. Oh those LSATS, they loom so brightly.

"It's good to be the king."

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Post the 1st

First, genesis.

I am not writing this because my brother's blog has reached astronomical levels of popularity. Much of my existence serves to either ridicule or improve on anything he might do. While this will do both, it is by no means the primary impetus for joining the blogosphere. The title alone should make you think twice before reaching such a conclusion.

The real reason I do this is because I told Danny Karlinsky, henceforth known solely as Karlinsky the Younger, that if he did it then I would as well. Since I'm never one to back down from a simple wager, I was rather disappointed when I woke up this morning to find that he actually followed through with such a bone-headed idea. The good news is that you are now reading about me.

Second, an introduction.

So like my brother, I play a lot of ultimate. However, as you can see from that previous picture he is zero fun after he plays. We both play for Pike, which is pretty sweet. I don't know if anyone else competes on the same team as one of their siblings, but there is a certain awareness that you can share. We often know what the other is about to do before they do it. Another note for all of you reading this: I am not Dusty. If another person walks up to me and says, "Hey its Dusty, I read your blog. You are stoopid cool." Or, "Hey its Dusty, I read your blog. You are hella-lame." I will not be held responsible for your injuries. He is #3, I am #97. Which, interestingly enough, correlates to two distinguishing characteristics between us. This is the relative percentage of natural ability which was passed down from pater- and mater-familias. It is also the percentage of fun which we contribute to our surroundings.

Third, a purpose.

This is difficult to really pinpoint. I don't want to just recount Pike's experiences as we get to Nationals 2007, because I know someone who is already doing that. I don't want to just recount my daily comings and goings, because it already bores the hell out of me. So what is left?

A hybrid of sorts. I will air my opinions about ultimate in general, create a sounding board about training techniques that I use/eschew while preparing for the season, and even give a small glimpse into what I do with the rest of my life. Maybe someone wants to know.

Looks good for the beginning.

"You stay classy, San Diego?"