Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Flip Cup. It's TIME.

"Can we play Flip Cup now?"


Bounce Off is pretty cool....but apparently you cats have been missing Flip Cup.

Here's some tips from the pros to get the party started and keep it going all night!
(There are a few WAKA players who have been around for a bit playing this'll see some familiar faces in the pictures below. If you catch them hanging around the bar just trying to look cool - challenge them to a flip off and tell them to get their damn party pants on!)

Important Notes: There is a whole other bar UPSTAIRS at the Watering Bowl. Complete with pitchers and high top tables that are perfect for flip cup. The lounge areas are also set up quite well for a nice sit down game of Gentleman's Flip Cup if you're feeling fancy.

1. Recruit!
  • Challenge the team you played on the field to see how your skills stack up at the bar. 
  • Get the hottie you've been wanting to talk to and get them to grab a couple friends (in case you haven't noticed...there's some excellent eye contact that happens during flip cup). 
  • Find the person who's graduating, leaving in the morning for a work trip, has a birthday sometime in the next three weeks, going to Founder's Cup. They all need a little flip cup in their life.

2. Prep the Area
Push tables together, move chairs out of the way. Get cups!

There are some simple social rules to flip cup - if beer magically appears in front of you and you drink it - buy a pitcher the next time. It only takes on pitcher to get started - you can play all night for an $8 investment in ONE pitcher when everyone pitches in!

Get your cups up, make sure the teams are fairly even, or someone is willing to drink 2 cups to even it out. Find someone with a real loud voice to get things going...there might be some distraction coming into play after the first few rounds.

5. Cheers, tap, drink!

Get the game started off right: make sure you have strong eye contact with your opponent. This is the perfect moment for a bit of trash talk, an awkward question, or a bit of flirting. Don't miss out on the golden opportunity to make a memory - that you might forget later...

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Offseason News and Notes

The kickball offseason is brief, and yet even with only a couple weeks off, professional ballers pack as much into their free time as possible. As seen in the following offseason highlights*, that's not always a good thing. Let's just be glad kickball is returning this week.

Injured Catcher Featured on ESPN 30 for 30 Documentary. A year removed from tearing his Achilles tendon, Mark Miranda has found a new calling in life: living vicariously through his four-legged best friend. The longtime kickballer (The Peep Show, STU GOTZ) has channeled his competitive energy into training his Bernese mountain dog, Bear, for agility competitions. This heartwarming story of a shattered boy and his affable pup, titled “My Cross to Bear,” will air on ESPN at 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 4.

Coming From Behind Player Camping Out for New Yellowcard Album. CFBer Matthew Jay can be found in a Coleman tent outside of the Best Buy in Glendale, where he’s lived since mid-August. He’s anxiously awaiting the release of Yellowcard’s new album, Lift a Sail, on October 7. “It’s a good thing he’s camping out,” said Best Buy store manager Jasper Livingston. “We only ordered one copy. Frankly, we didn’t think there’d be any demand.”

SEC Alum Watches CSU vs. CU Game. “It was pretty cute,” said University of Florida graduate Ben Hedrick. “Seeing everyone all excited about the big game, with their little faces painted and the mascots trash talking each other, it really reminded me of high school.” The Rams shocked the 5,000 people in attendance by taking the heated rivalry in an upset 31-17 victory. CSU looks to build on its momentum in its Mountain West Conference opener against Boise State this Saturday. “Wait, there’s a Mountain West Conference?” said Hedrick. “How adorable!”

World’s Biggest Panthers Fan Fails to Draft Cam Newton in Fantasy Football. In a catastrophic series of events, utility man Jeff Golden (STU GOTZ, Truffle Shuffle, Moist) had too many beers and snagged Drew Brees in the second round. Cam Newton was taken shortly thereafter. “What have I done?” Golden said between sobs. “I don’t even know why I selected that no-talent assclown thug (Brees). It’s not about points! It’s about love! Bountygate. %^&*!” At the time of this writing, Golden was mulling a trade offer from Newton owner Jen Frame -- Cam for his entire first five draft picks. “Intriguing…” Golden mumbled, his red eyes finally clearing.

Several Male Kickballer Nudes Leaked After iCloud Hack. Rumors are circulating around the Internet about leaked nude photos of some of Denver’s most famous male kickball stars. Players from Dark Side, Moist, Coming From Behind, The Peep Show and Dem Denver Peeps are being implicated. “Those photos are obviously fake,” said Phil Jones. “I don’t even like carrots.”

Scientists Claim Ballzagna Actually Brighter Than Sun. In a recent study, researchers at CU Denver discovered that when fully decked out in uniform – included sunglasses, bandanas and knee-high socks – Ballzagna players are actually more radiant than the sun. The scientists are unsure what this all means, but they are fascinated by the small round objects beginning to orbit the team’s captains. “One of them could support life,” lead researcher Ron Ruggles said.

*Nothing in this article is true. Obviously. Well, maybe some of it.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Ten Types of People You’ll See at the WAKA Playoffs

1. The Guy Who Shows Up 5 Minutes Late In The Clothes He Was Wearing Last Night
It was Friday night, and he wasn’t about to waste it just because he had to be up early for kickball. He’ll saunter up to the field from some unknown place of origin, striped button-down shirt draped casually over his shoulder, wearing a puke-stained wifebeater and black slacks. Usually passed out in the shade – or drunk again – by Game 2. 

2. Random Family Members Of Teammates That You Didn’t Even Know Existed
Wait, Susie is married with two middle-school aged children? This seems like something that would have come up. 

3. Soccer Mom In Training
Armed to the teeth with water bottles, sunscreen, chairs, blankets, juice boxes and orange slices, there isn’t a scenario for which she’s not prepared. 

4. The Team Taking It Way Too Seriously
After an enforced week of sobriety, this team spent their Friday night watching game film and debating the merits of the infield shift. They awoke with the birds that morning to eat a power breakfast and begin structured pre-game warmups promptly at 7 a.m. 

5. The Team Not Taking It Seriously Even In The Slightest
They’ve moved on to the second case of Bud Light before the first kick. Usually hanging out at the wrong field and content to dance along to their Block Rocker, they’re clearly only there for the party. And they’re sorry they’re not sorry about it. 

6. Frantic Captain of the Latecomers
No one should have to endure this much stress at 9 a.m. Jenny is stuck in traffic; Sarah and Eric hooked up again and are MIA with dead cell phones; Maria just got called into work; and all of a sudden this captain’s 18-person roster has only produced 7 players at the field on time. In desperation they will try to sneak in a sub – any sub – only to get called out by The Team Taking It Way Too Seriously. 

7. The Group Who Wants to Play Anything But Kickball
A full day at a big open field with tons of friends? Better bring a soccer ball, football, softball glove, lawn darts, horseshoes and lacrosse stick. “Oh, I’m sorry, is our volleyball net cool in left field?"

8. The Competitive Lawn Gamer
When the kickball is over, the true competition begins. This guy’s team was eliminated in the first round and he’s spent the remainder of the tournament hovering over the cornhole set, just waiting for a challenger. Once his 10-game run ends in dramatic overtime fashion, he’ll saunter over to the Can Jam area and talk smack until someone finally agreed to be his partner. 

9. The Upwardly Mobile All-Star
This person is ready to “take their talents to South Beach.” After a season of making SportsCenter Top-10 plays on a 1-7 kickball team, they are desperately trying to get noticed – by whatever means necessary. They will volunteer to referee every game, engage in conversation with Random Family Members Of Teammates That You Didn’t Even Know Existed in an attempt to get an “in,” and show up awkwardly in the background of the championship team’s photos with their index finger raised high. 

10. The Relieved Community Coordinator
After two months of party planning, recruiting, e-mailing, schedule-making, negotiating and politely listening to every complaint in the book, the second the games are over the overworked Community Coordinator(s) will saunter over to a quiet corner, down a fifth of Fireball and weep tears of pure joy.

Friday, March 28, 2014

WAKA: More Than Just a Children's Game

Editor's Note: This week we brought in a special guest writer, Golden. He definitely is not an anonymous regular contributor to this blog. He hasn't written for it in like a year or two. Seriously. Don't ask any more questions.

Kickball is the fourth-best thing to ever happen to me. It’s only surpassed by Cam Newton, mountains, and the day I realized my girlfriend’s dog loves me more than her. My success story is hardly unique. It’s one of thousands across the country, including probably two or three dozen right here in Denver.

I'm writing this blog mostly for the new or prospective players. When your team of free agents is getting whalloped 34-0 by Globogym still kicking for the fences and arguing every ball and strike, remember this: only a fraction of what kickball has to offer is on the field.

I played my first WAKA game in Spring 2010, in the Boston-area MA Minutemen League. I joined New Kicks on the Block, an established team that always finished near the top of the standings. Heading to play under the lights on a baseball diamond in Somerville every Wednesday quickly became the highlight of my week. 

We took over our sponsor bar, this little Latin dive, and a dedicated group of us always partied until they kicked us out. Sure it hurt at work the next morning, but four years later I remember those nights more vividly than any spreadsheet -- or any of the actual kickball games, for that matter. Before joining WAKA, I could count my friends in Boston on my fingers. By the time I left to move to Denver that June, only a couple months later, it took me weeks of parties and happy hours to properly say goodbye.

Starting over (again) in a new city, I joined WAKA Denver at the first opportunity. I was randomly assigned as a free agent to Balls and Dolls of the CO Mile High league in Spring 2011. While Balls and Dolls was quite possibly the worst kickball team to ever take the field, I experienced the same phenomenon as in Boston. My friend group exploded from a half-dozen people to hundreds in about two weeks. Even then, CO Mile High had its established teams and a somewhat cliquey atmosphere. I’ll let y’all in on a little secret: go to the bar. Stay at the bar. Play flip cup at the bar. You’ll feel included in no time.

Balls and Dolls: What we lacked in skill, we made up for in fun.
Flip cup is the key.
Balls and Dolls merged with, hilariously enough, the only team we beat that spring: STU GATZ (sic). As it turns out, sometimes two wrongs do make a right. STU GATZ jumped to immediate championship contention. More importantly than that, I met people who I can honestly say will be lifelong friends. The team with the annoying cheer changed its name to the correct spelling (STU GOTZ) and became known for crushing last-minute championship losses and enviable bandanas.

By 2012, playing kickball one night a week was no longer enough. I joined the second Denver league, CO Recess, as part of the PINK TACOS. Spoiler alert: those people were freakin’ awesome too. I became so enamored with kickball that I started volunteering to write for this very GMOT newsletter, back when the talented Hallie Myers was producing it in a beautiful PDF format. STU GOTZ finally won a championship. Some people retired or moved away or changed teams, but fresh faces came in too. Times were good.
The original STU GOTZ.
One of my favorite STU GOTZ teams. Runners-up.
Birth of the bandanas.
Finally champions.
How could things possibly get better? I met my girlfriend, Kate, at the Spring 2013 pre-season party. I don’t want to get too mushy or anything, but nothing will ever surpass that as the crown jewel of my kickball career.

The CO Recess coordinator, Ashley, departed for California in the middle of the Summer 2013 season. I was a natural target to take over because I'm better than her at everything, and after intense negotiations (Lydia had to buy me a whole four beers), I agreed to terms. I’d also joined a new team that season called Truffle Shuffle. (Sorry, PINK TACOS. Spanny promised I could pitch.) It was a small league and, thanks to karma from Benedict Golden, Truffle Shuffle lost to the PINK TACOS in the championship. That’s not what I take away from that season, though. Once again joining a new team was like gaining a whole new family. Along with the players on STU GOTZ and the Tacos, Truffle Shuffle became some of my best friends.
O.G. Truffle Shuffle
In Fall 2013, I was called upon to run the much larger CO Mile High league. Let’s just call that an eye-opening experience. Most players have little idea how much work goes into running a season, from recruiting teams/players to creating a schedule to planning parties/themes to resolving petty disputes week in and week out. You have the impossible job of making everyone happy. I swear, anyone who runs a WAKA season should receive some sort of honorary Psychology degree.

We’re up to recent history now. I dislocated my shoulder in September and haven’t really been able to play since, except in the Fall 2013 tournament to help Truffle Shuffle win its first championship. I had surgery in January to repair recurrent shoulder instability, and at the earliest I’ll be ready to go by summer. The safe plan would be waiting until fall. Perhaps even safer would be hanging up my cleats for good. (But screw that.)
Mmm, Grounds For Dismissal tears.
Trufflin' champs.

Kickball has given me literally hundreds of friends, several championships, an awesome dog and the girl who comes with him, and memories to last several lifetimes. So if you’re new or prospective player and wondering what this kickball thing is all about, the tl;dr version of this tale is simply that my life is infinitely richer and more fulfilling because of it. Thanks to everyone who’s played a part, and here's to many, many more good times.


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

An Ode to Spring Kickball

Weather that’s 70 degrees and sunny one day and blowing snow the next. Buddies coming back together after months of ski houses, sports bars, wacky fundraisers and beach vacations. New players registering, excited to meet their teams after recently relocating or deciding to expand their social circle. Fierce recruiting and the congenial trash-talk that comes along with it. Most of all, a tangible buzz, an electricity that can be felt whenever you put two kickballers in the same room.

It’s the eve of Spring kickball in the Mile High City.

The season officially begins tonight with a pre-season pickup game and Captain’s Meeting, with the first round of play scheduled for next week. Can we expect a blizzard, like last season’s epic snow-blasted Week 1? Or will players be lounging around in T-shirt sipping Coronas (in a CAN, of course)? Well, we probably won’t know that until next Wednesday morning. Touche, Colorado. What we do know is that no matter the weather, we’re in for a fine season on the turf at Infinity Park (CO Mile High) and downtown at City of Cuernavaca Park (CO Radical).

Snow Bowl: Spring 2013 CO Mile High Week 1

The defending CO Mile High Champion, Truffle Shuffle, lost their best and most handsome player to the IR and will face a new challenger in The Darkside Colorado Chapter 2.0 (Fall 2013 CO Radical Champions). The Peep Show has reloaded, and GROUNDS FOR DISMISSAL! returns in all its gangly glory after notching an Indoor Kickball title less than a week ago. Ballzagna and the Disco Ninjas are back for their second seasons after showing much improvement last fall, while a new-look CFB could surprise. Or will a new team shock the world?

Indoor Kickball Champions: Groundz For Dismissal

More of a social kickballer than a competitive kickballer? Don’t worry, you’re in the majority, and we have good news for you too! Kati Gangles has joined the WAKA staff as a social coordinator, and with the help of a seasoned party-planner freshly imported from the Albuquerque leagues, the shenanigans are going to be “turned up to 11” for 2014. Remember, if you skip out on visiting the sponsor bar after your game, you’re missing 72 percent of the fun. That’s a totally accurate, definitely not made up statistic.

The Gangly One

Speaking of the sponsor bar, if you took a break during indoor kickball, you’re soon to be introduced to The Lift. Formerly known as The Watering Bowl, it’s a huge dog-friendly establishment with projection-screen TVs for sports, two bars, games and an outdoor patio where the pups are allowed off-leash. Basically, it’s the perfect warm-weather bar for Denver. Better yet, they’re hooking us up with awesome food and drink specials.

In the spirit of the Winter Olympics...

Feel the rhythm, feel the rhyme, get on up, IT’S KICKBALL TIME!

Still want to sign up? Registration for both the CO Mile High and CO Radical leagues remain open. Visit for more information, and be sure to follow our Facebook page for regular updates.