cannot be taught at practice.
I have been unable to get Andrew Fleming's article on anticipation off of my mind since I first read it. There's no better analogy. You have a limited amount of time in which the disc is in the same place. Limited number of expected throws. Limited number of open spaces. Where will the disc go? How will you get there first? That's defense. That's offense. That's 13 of the 14 players on the field at any given time. That's ultimate.
Then there's game-time-throwing. A completely different sport. I love throwing. I want to play "Throwing" all of the time. I mean, I like ultimate... but throwing? Reading 12 players downfield? Adjusting the mark to get what you want (when do we want it?)? Knowing that it is all in your hands? I love that.
Manny just CRUSHED a ball in the first inning. I remember playing baseball. I hated baseball. But I didn't play much "baseball." I played "Pitching." I loved pitching. Reading The Whole Game. Remembering all of the at-bats. Adjusting the batter to get what you want. Having the Whole Game in your hands. I loved that.
I want the weight on my shoulders.
I want the success and the failure.
I want the pleasure and the pain.
My grip on the disc crushes
Fear's grip on me.
I just reread Hector Valdiva's piece on Kill Mode again. And again. You either know what he means or you don't. Your teammates know it about you. Your opponents only know too late.
Sometimes before you win the game, you have to lose the game.
Someone typed once. Or twice. Or was so proud of it that he repeated it over and over.
Sometimes I remember who and which.
There's a game that is played at Regionals and Regionals alone: The early backdoor game. Where the loser goes home and the winner lives on. In my time on Pike, we've played a few of these (06 v Los, Potomac, Burgh. Though the game v Los was the last round of pool play.) but not many (possibly no others). We never lost them. The only bracketlosses we had were Semis, Finals and Games-to-Go.
Last weekend we played the depressing final round on Saturday against the Medicine Men. No one watches this game. We rolled. No game of consequence here, just first round Sunday Losers tiring themselves out.
Then we woke up to another game of no consequence. Now Forge. Too long to get to kill mode. As I said to someone before the Los-Forge game: "Forge will lose. We didn't prepare them for this game with the way we played last round. Los will be out for Blood." Lo and Behold...
I love Pike08. I was challenged in new ways as a player/teammate/captain. I have been imperfect at each, but I've improved each with every step. So has the team. *NO* Pike has ever improved as much over one season as Pike08.
Barring a military coup (I got my eye on you, Jake the Jake) I'll be back as co-captain of Pike2009. I'm already excited for the coming season as captain. That said, I'm also excited to NOT CAPTAIN ANYTHING and JUSTPLAY for now. (Mosh, Ultimax, Lei-Out, Vegas, Kaimana: You're on notice.)
Season End Early?
Start Next Season Early.
Your Team Needs More.
Thursday, October 9
Friday, October 3
it took me back
to other falls.
which memories shall
we etch and preserve
no answer before end
only knowing that no
matter the substance
no matter the result
we will remember the
path we have already
(have good qualifying!)