Blackadder’s Lair

The home of many a cunning plan

Man’s Greatest Fear

The fear is that while walking along and enjoying the day, a ball from one of these groups will inadvertently roll your way. Everyone on the team has his eye on that ball, which is now at your feet. You must pick up the ball and return it to the team in a manner fitting to the game.

So, for example, you can’t kick a baseball or basketball back. You have to throw the baseball with accuracy to the guy holding up the glove. The basketball must be returned with one of those two-hand push things and done in a manner that defies gravity. The football must be returned so that it flies like a bullet with no odd twists and turns. The soccer ball must be kicked bang on and straight to the person who awaits its return.

This trick must be performed without any warm up whatsoever. As a man, you must be able to instantly become the greatest player of the game in question. Why must you do this? Because…well, because you are a man!

For any man, this instills a sense of complete terror. Some men are so frozen by the prospect of screwing up that they pretend not to see the ball at all, which is a jerky thing to do. But it’s better to be regarded as a jerk than a complete incompetent.

Why incompetence? Here is the problem. You might throw a baseball perfectly well 99 times out of 100. You can practice and practice and increase your skill. But the one time that you return the ball in a crazy, catawampus, incompetent way is that very time at the park (you only have one chance!) when you are called upon to return the stray ball to the team playing in the park.

The trouble is that this one time is what defines your life! It is the only thing that all the guys playing in the park know about you. “Oh, you are the guy who overthrew the baseball by like 15 feet! Sheesh!”

More. (HT: Bob Murphy)


November 10, 2008 - Posted by | Humor, Quotidian Matters, Sports

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