The date is Sunday, July 20th 1969. It’s a school night but mom and dad are letting you stay up past your bedtime. You’re not exactly sure why the TV broadcast is so important, but there’s no reason to ask questions. Tonight’s a freebie. You scan the room to gain context clues from your parents’ reactions. As the clock ticks from 8:16pm to 8:17pm your dad puts down his beer and leans towards the television with both elbows on his knees. “Hey, Son,” he says, with a big grin on his face. “This is a moment you’re never going to forget. One day this could be you!” You match his anxiety and scoot closer to the TV. In less than 60 seconds Apollo 11 will be landing on the moon and you’re about to witness it firsthand. Your heart begins beating faster and faster. The second hand beats like a drum as the living room falls silent. In this split second your dad’s words echo in your head, “One day this could be you!” Whoa. You’ve never dreamed so big. Your 6 year old imagination takes flight as you picture yourself in the cockpit of the space shuttle. Nothing is going to stop you from becoming the next Buzz Aldrin. Nothing.
In 1998 the World Adult Kickball Association was founded and stopped you from becoming an astronaut. A recreational league of 20-somethings who meet every Thursday and play drinking games? Sold. The only Buzz you care about anymore comes from an ice-cold Miller Light.
What is it about Kickball? Why is it considered to be the most wicked-game-ever by the Guinness Book of World Records? It’s because Kickball is a game of high-wit, high-energy strategy. It marries the sports of soccer and baseball into a beautiful union that can only be broken by the occasional beerbong. Why join the ranks of Armstrong or Collins when you could move up in the ranks of your league’s weekly standings. Don’t think you’re athletic enough for kickball? Great news, Couch Potato. Kickball doesn’t care if you peaked in high school. If you can jog, kick, and catch you’re already overqualified.
Kickball is the recess of your adult life. Flashback to that sunny June day in 3rd grade: Ms. Frizzle’s out sick with a hangover, and you’ve got Davie from down the street as your substitute teacher. The day couldn’t get any better. You and 20 of your best classmates head out to the playground to have a good time, impress girls, and make each other look stupid for the magical 30 minutes of free-time. The only difference between now and then is a BAC of 1%.
Kickball is prime-time to show off your sub-par athletic abilities. Have a lot of pent up anger from a hard day’s work? Come on down to Kickball Land where nailing someone with a rubber ball 2 sizes smaller than you is not only acceptable, it’s funny.
You’re sold. Knee-high socks, short shorts, and cleats are en route. Time to start your daily stretches and squats. If you want to be running bases like Rogers Hornsby you’ve got to earn some sweat equity. Looking to hit a homerun? Good luck. Literally the only thing more difficult than hitting a home run in kickball is flying a space shuttle.
I rarely get invited to give presentations during school career fairs. And by rarely I mean never. But if I were to you can bet I’d tell them my story.
I didn’t choose to be the astronaut exploring new worlds, nor the firefighter running into blazing infernos. I didn’t become the ballerina inspiring a theatre full of spectators nor the doctor performing miracles. The police officer serving and protecting didn’t pique my interest. For me, two roads diverged in a wood, and I- I chose the one that led to friends, brews, and good times.