sports

The Hottest New Sport #2 – Ceiling Soccer

Regular soccer is boring. Where’s the head rush in playing it? If only we could make it different.

I’m glad you spoke up. It’s time to play Ceiling Soccer.

How does one play Ceiling Soccer? Simply pump up the ball with helium. (Don’t use hydrogen; it’s prone to exploding in flames.) The ball will rise to the top. How do we get the players to ceiling? Magnetize the arena’s walls and ceiling. Make the soccer shoes metallic. The players can now climb up the walls and stay on the ceiling.

Will the players be upside down? Absolutely. Won’t the players’ blood pool into their head? Oh yes, that’s how they’ll get their head rushes. Will the jerseys need to be metallic as well? Yes, or else gravity will pull them off the players.

Ceiling Soccer.

GOOOOOAAAAAAALLLLL!

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: sports, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Snail Rock Racing

The Indy 500 would be one of the most exciting races ever, if you could see it. If you manage to attend the event, the cars will be too far away. They’ll look like differently colored ladybugs. And the race is so noisy. Sure you could watch the 500 on TV. But then you get to see only one or two cars at a time where they tend to keep pace with each other. What’s the excitement in that?

No, you need to see all the contestants at one time to appreciate all the drama. How about people running? We can rule out the longer distances such as the mile. In this case,  the camera takes a wide view where the runners look like brightly colored, running lady bugs or it takes a close up, where we again see only two of the contestants.

How about sprinting? Hoo boy, Usain Bolt sure is fast and darned exciting to watch. But in these races, the whole thing is over in seconds. What do we do then with the rest of the day? We require a sport where we can see all of the entrants at any one time. We need a race that lasts minutes.

Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you Snail Rock Racing!

On your marks, get set, go!

 

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

 

Categories: observations, sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Elephants Graveyard – Part 1

“The Elephants’ Graveyard is right there in Biloxi.”

The cabby’s assertion startled me.

“Biloxi, Mississippi? Are you sure about that? It seems hard to believe.”

“It’s true all right. You have my word as a cabby.”

“Come now, I don’t see any elephants here.”

“We’re not in Biloxi, friend. We haven’t left the airport. We gotta go east to Biloxi to see any elephants. The FAA don’t let no elephants into Gulfport. Dangerous to landing planes, you know.”

The meter ran as he talked and I was anxious to make my meeting, but I couldn’t resist saying,

“But the government is shut down again. Who will keep the elephants out of Gulfport now?”

“Damn!” The cabby slammed on the brakes to stop the cab, which wasn’t hard to do as we weren’t moving. He jumped out of the car. “Ow!” Chastened and little more cautious he opened the door and then got out. He retrieved a massive weapon out of the trunk and made his way back to the cab.

“Here, take this,” he growled as he hurled the gun at me. Minutes later when the ringing in my ears subsided I replied,

“How is it that I never read about it, anywhere?”

“Oh, I don’t know. I guess the local reporters just got used to ’em, and just never wrote ’em up.”

“But surely, the migration of elephants to Mississippi would have made front-page news?”

“You’re wrong, friend. The elephants came here in 1862, right in the middle of the war. Folks round were just too preoccupied with the fighting to notice them right off. But soon enough, General Lee enrolled them into his army. The ‘phants, as some call them, were in Pickett’s charge at Gettysburg. We would have won the battle, but them Yankees let loose thousands of mice. Those mice scared the ‘phants, who turned around and stampeded the Rebel men. That’s how we lost the war.”

“Fascinating, but why did they choose here of all places?”

“For the peanuts.”

“But they don’t grow peanuts in Mississippi, they grow peanuts in Georgia as you well know.”

“Well, those ‘phants didn’t know nothing about that, did they? You’re not as smart as you looked, Mister. I’m fixing to take you there, right now.”

“But, I simply must be at a meeting in Long Beach, to the West!”

He ignored my feeble protests, gunned the engine, and soon we hurtled eastward at speeds up to 20 miles per hour. Soon the fair gulf regaled us with its shimmering beauty.

Thalassa! Thalassa!”, I shouted to the cabby, “That’s Greek for the ‘The Sea.’ The Sea.”

“Yea, whatever. Look, there’s Peanuts Pavilion. Right next to that is the Planter’s dock and peanut refinery.”

“Ooh, that looks quite interesting. May we stop and investigate?”

“No.” He stomped on the gas pedal as way of protest and soon we were pushing the edge of the envelope at 25. “We’re looking for ‘phants. You gotta problem with that?”

“No,” I meekly replied. Since I was at the cabby’s mercy, I resolved to endure the best I could and would resolutely scan the horizon for the noble beasts whenever I wasn’t following the soaring meter.

Soon we crossed the border into Biloxi and immediately the clouds parted to reveal glorious, golden shafts of sunlight. I could almost swear I could hear angels singing melodious hymns of joy. The cabby belched.

Soon, the traffic in our lane slowed and eventually stopped at Eisenhower Drive, while in the lane to the bookstore, traffic ground to a halt. All the while, the meter merrily climbed. We noticed state troopers inspecting the cars, talking to all, waving some on, and pulling over others. Soon, one made his way to the cabby’s Honda Accord.

“Transporting any illegal elephants with you?”

“No,” the cabby explained at length as he handed over his license.

The trooper examined the license and then carefully pointed his flashlight inside the cab. Eventually, he seemed satisfied by our serene demeanor and waved us on. Whoosh, aided by a tail wind, we again darted eastward, leaving even the most vigorous pedestrians far behind. I turned to watch the Miss-Elephant-Rider-of-the-Mississippi-Gulf-Coast contest taking place on the beach; so did the cabby.

Crash! After shaking off the shattered glass, I looked up to behold a most angry pachyderm. Instinctively, I knew the elephant’s name to be Felix.

“What ho, Felix! How’s it hanging?” I bantered cheerfully to the gray skinned beast breathing in my face. Evidently, this was not proper elephantine etiquette as Felix trumpeted loudly as he crushed the front of the cab with one mighty stamp.

“Damn,” gushed the rattled cabby and then moments later, “I’m ruined.”

“My goodness, it’s not as bad as all that,” I opined. “Aren’t you covered by AAA insurance? I have it and it explicitly states that they will replace any one car crushed by a rampaging elephant.”

“Yep, but that won’t do me no good. That ‘phant will just hunt me down and crush every car I drive.”

“Surely, you are blowing a little tiff by that elephant all out of proportion.”

“No, I’m not. An elephant never forgets.”

The cabby remained inconsolable, and so, I waited quietly for AAA to bring the new cab. I then spied the smashed meter, and so, waited contentedly for the new car.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: humor, sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Great Chicken Invitational – Part 2

But the reason for their poor performances lay in the chickens themselves. Remarkably, no one had considered the possibility that a twenty-ounce chicken using a four-inch club would drive a regulation golf ball a considerably shorter distance than would a two-hundred-pound man with a regulation club. Furthermore, for all their attentiveness to their swings, the chickens’ lack of hands proved to be a major obstacle to getting firm grips on their clubs.

Two weeks later, eighteen hardy chickens reached the green. Two chickens hit their balls into sand traps and couldn’t get out even though they remembered to use their chicken-sized wedges. Ten other chickens ended their brief golf careers by running into the adjacent woods to search for worms, and disappeared forever.

Play picked up considerably on the green. It turned out that chickens are natural born putters. Aided by cleverly-designed putters, made small enough to be held in their beaks, they dazzled the crowd with one precise putt after another. “I wish I could putt like those chickens,” said Norm Gregson of the PGA.

Observant golfers noticed that the chickens stand so close to the ground that they can figure out exactly which way their putts would break. One of these golfers, John Hona, later suggested to the PGA that chickens be used as “designated putters” in human-golf tournaments. It turned him down flat, “The answer is no.”

Official scorers added up the strokes at the end of the first hole. Roxanne led the pack by thirteen strokes with a score of 397. Technically, Roxanne shot a tricentinonadecadouble bogey, but the press just called it a “chicken bogey.”

Around the third week, while the chickens were half way through the second hole, sarcastic geeks ruffled the plucky poultry by yelling, “Cacciatore,” “Southern Fried,” or by calling their clubs “drum sticks.” The chickens flinched under the pressure of these specieist remarks, slicing more balls than usual. The organizers resorted to handing out free, fresh eggs from the competitors to keep them quiet.

Froussard golf club celebrated the Fourth of July in grand style. Organizers labored all week setting up a spectacular fireworks display. The remaining eleven chickens then contributed to the crowd’s enjoyment when they put on a snappy, morality play based on the daily life of a chicken. Afterwards, all sorts of chicken dishes were served to a hungry audience. “That’ll teach you to miss the cut,” growled Bob Banks as he bit into a hot-and-spicy chicken wing.

Three chickens exited the tournament in August. Vain and high-strung, Sandra, up and left the course clucking about a bad feather day. Nadine, suddenly felt the need to establish her roots and departed to seek her biological mother. Spontaneous combustion claimed the life of Martha as she prepared to putt out the eighth hole. “If she was going to blow up, she should have done it during last-month’s fireworks display,” sniffed organizer, Beverly Hatcher.

Rain fell heavily in late October. The downpour bothered none of the chickens, who clucked, drove, and putted as if nothing was wrong. Seeing this, a golfer’s wife remarked, “They’re just like human golfers.”

Snow fell heavily in the middle of December, and so, play deteriorated rapidly when chickens swung their clubs with difficulty through snow that came up to their beaks. Many chickens could no longer find their balls in the snow drifts. Indeed, the tournament’s officials lost several chickens in the deep snow.

By New Year’s Day, only two chickens remained, Agatha and Roxanne. These two had reached the green and were within only a few hours of finishing the course. Tension and excitement coursed throughout the golfing world as the two chickens were tied, each having a score of 6,127.

Interest in this tournament had grown so feverish that the television networks pushed the New Year’s Day bowl games back one week. Tens of thousands of people lined the rope around the eighteenth hole while helicopters from scores of television stations, domestic and foreign, circled above. “Those chickens upstaged us,” complained Bob Gallina, quarterback of the top ranked, LSU Tigers.

The crowd cheered every well-executed putt of the dueling chicks. Excitement reached a peak when Roxanne holed out with a score 6,157. But Agatha was only four inches from the cup, needing to make her putt for a sudden-death tie.

Agatha intently bent down, surveyed the green, picked up her putter, and set herself to putt. Then, disaster struck! A red fox burst onto the green and snatched Agatha in his hungry jaw. Hundreds of people ran after the fox into the trees to save Agatha, but found only a pile of feathers and a tiny putter.

The crowded peeled away from the course in horror and rage. Its hero had been eaten, an unprecedented event in golf. Things got ugly when many yelled threats at the tournament’s organizers. The more rabid fans produced nooses and proposed hanging the hated organizers. Hearing this, the objects of their hate took off in a flash, jumped into their cars, and sped away.

That was the end of the Great Chicken-Golf Invitational. From nearby Canby, Montana, the organizers declared Roxanne the winner, by default.

The carnage of the tournament appalled golfers and people everywhere. The American Wildlife Federation and corporations withdrew their sponsorships of a proposed second tournament. Interest in chicken golf died off rapidly after that. Now only a few people still think back to the days when chickens had a tournament of their own.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: history, short story, sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Great Chicken Invitational

The Great Chicken Invitational

Golf had long been a bastion of people, its exclusivity maintained by a silent gentle folk’s agreement. But no longer, for on January 1, 1974, in Kippen, Idaho, chickens finally integrated the game.

The top thirty chickens in Idaho arrived at the prestigious, private golf club, Froussard for “The Great Chicken Invitational.” Earlier, in late August, Froussard enrolled a chicken to qualify as the host.

Skeptics everywhere had maintained that chickens do not have the necessities to play golf. Other critics had argued that even if physically able chickens could be found, they would not have the mental skills required to converse and to make business contacts.

Nevertheless, the Great Chicken Invitational came to pass. The Invitational’s organizers invited the most athletic chickens for miles around. Intrepid entrepreneurs designed full lines of chicken-sized golf clubs. Chicken owners everywhere got into the spirit and demanded full sets of these clubs for their tiny friends.

Golf enthusiasts from all over the world yearned to see the momentous event. Sven Fjaderfa, CEO and owner of mammoth Swedish Furniture, up and left work a day before the start of the tournament. “I want to see chickens play golf,” he told his employees. Thousands of other golfers joined him at Kippen, Idaho, for the greatest exhibition of golf the state has ever seen.

At seven in the morning of January 1, the organizers trucked in the chickens to the golf course. While the officials spent an hour assigning starting times, the spectators admired the chickens’ traditional tartan knickerbockers. “They look darling,” stated Heather Anders of Fashion Magazine.

At eight o’clock, the organizers unloaded the chickens near the first tee. The chickens immediately scattered to peck for worms in the recently mowed course. Eventually, an official, Tom Purdue, caught Agatha and plopped her down at the tee. He gave the chicken a number one wood, as this was a 476 yards, par 5 hole.

The crowd watched in anticipation, as Agatha surveyed the fairway. She carefully held the driver in the traditional chicken grip, the top wing just touching the bottom wing. All expected Agatha to be a serious competitor, as she never smiled. She looked down the fairway once more, clucked a few times, moved the club back, keeping her left wing straight, and then rapidly brought it forward to hit the ball.

Sarah Dindon, was there for the tee off. “I was lying down on the ground looking up at the blue sky, as I have always found this the best way to view chicken golf.” Sarah watched Agatha’s ball soar above her head into the clouds. The ball then came down, landing a yard down the fairway. At this effort, some unsympathetic fans hooted in derision. Agatha reacted angrily by pecking her nearest tormentors.

The organizers hoped for better results from Roxanne, a fierce, muscular chicken, who spat gravel at the poor official who carried her to the tee. Roxanne followed Agatha’s lead by selecting a driver from the tiny bag on her back. She exhibited perfect form, as a lifetime of looking for worms in the ground had given her the enviable ability to keep her darn, stupid head down. Although her drive nearly doubled Agatha’s in length, this still meant she was 474 yards short. Nearly all the attending journalists agreed that her chances of parring the hole were remote.

Chicken after chicken followed the pattern of Agatha and Roxanne. Something had gone wrong. Apologists for the fowls suggested that the media circus attending this first professional contest unnerved the flock. Indeed, Bob Banks, owner of Francine, slugged a reporter who badgered chickens in rather one-sided interviews.

But the reason for their poor performances lay in the chickens themselves. Remarkably, no one had considered the possibility that a twenty-ounce chicken using a four-inch club would drive a regulation golf ball a considerably shorter distance than would a two-hundred-pound man with a regulation club. Furthermore, for all their attentiveness to their swings, the chickens’ lack of hands proved to be a major obstacle to getting firm grips on their clubs.

Two weeks later, eighteen hardy chickens reached the green. Two chickens hit their balls into sand traps and couldn’t get out even though they remembered to use their chicken-sized wedges. Ten other chickens ended their brief golf careers by running into the adjacent woods to search for worms, and disappeared forever.

Play picked up considerably on the green. It turned out that chickens are natural born putters. Aided by cleverly-designed putters, made small enough to be held in their beaks, they dazzled the crowd with one precise putt after another. “I wish I could putt like those chickens,” said Norm Gregson of the PGA.

Observant golfers noticed that the chickens stand so close to the ground that they can figure out exactly which way their putts would break. One of these golfers, John Hona, later suggested to the PGA that chickens be used as “designated putters” in human-golf tournaments. It turned him down flat, “The answer is no.”

Official scorers added up the strokes at the end of the first hole. Roxanne led the pack by thirteen strokes with a score of 397. Technically, Roxanne shot a tricentinonadecadouble bogey, but the press just called it a “chicken bogey.”

Around the third week, while the chickens were half way through the second hole, sarcastic geeks ruffled the plucky poultry by yelling, “Cacciatore,” “Southern Fried,” or by calling their clubs “drum sticks.” The chickens flinched under the pressure of these specieist remarks, slicing more balls than usual. The organizers resorted to handing out free, fresh eggs from the competitors to keep them quiet.

Froussard golf club celebrated the Fourth of July in grand style. Organizers labored all week setting up a spectacular fireworks display. The remaining eleven chickens then contributed to the crowd’s enjoyment when they put on a snappy, morality play based on the daily life of a chicken. Afterwards, all sorts of chicken dishes were served to a hungry audience. “That’ll teach you to miss the cut,” growled Bob Banks as he bit into a hot-and-spicy chicken wing.

Three chickens exited the tournament in August. Vain and high-strung, Sandra, up and left the course clucking about a bad feather day. Nadine, suddenly felt the need to establish her roots and departed to seek her biological mother. Spontaneous combustion claimed the life of Martha as she prepared to putt out the eighth hole. “If she was going to blow up, she should have done it during last-month’s fireworks display,” sniffed organizer, Beverly Hatcher.

Rain fell heavily in late October. The downpour bothered none of the chickens, who clucked, drove, and putted as if nothing was wrong. Seeing this, a golfer’s wife remarked, “They’re just like human golfers.”
Snow fell heavily in the middle of December, and so, play deteriorated rapidly when chickens swung their clubs with difficulty through snow that came up to their beaks. Many chickens could no longer find their balls in the snow drifts. Indeed, the tournament’s officials lost several chickens in the deep snow.

By New Year’s Day, only two chickens remained, Agatha and Roxanne. These two had reached the green and were within only a few hours of finishing the course. Tension and excitement coursed throughout the golfing world as the two chickens were tied, each having a score of 6,127.

Interest in this tournament had grown so feverish that the television networks pushed the New Year’s Day bowl games back one week. Tens of thousands of people lined the rope around the eighteenth hole while helicopters from scores of television stations, domestic and foreign, circled above. “Those chickens upstaged us,” complained Bob Gallina, quarterback of the top ranked, LSU Tigers.

The crowd cheered every well-executed putt of the dueling chicks. Excitement reached a peak when Roxanne holed out with a score 6,157. But Agatha was only four inches from the cup, needing to make her putt for a sudden-death tie.

Agatha intently bent down, surveyed the green, picked up her putter, and set herself to putt. Then, disaster struck! A red fox burst onto the green and snatched Agatha in his hungry jaw. Hundreds of people ran after the fox into the trees to save Agatha, but found only a pile of feathers and a tiny putter.

The crowded peeled away from the course in horror and rage. Its hero had been eaten, an unprecedented event in golf. Things got ugly when many yelled threats at the tournament’s organizers. The more rabid fans produced nooses and proposed hanging the hated organizers. Hearing this, the objects of their hate took off in a flash, jumped into their cars, and sped away.

That was the end of the Great Chicken-Golf Invitational. From nearby Canby, Montana, the organizers declared Roxanne the winner, by default.

The carnage of the tournament appalled golfers and people everywhere. The American Wildlife Federation and corporations withdrew their sponsorships of a proposed second tournament. Interest in chicken golf died off rapidly after that. Now only a few people still think back to the days when chickens had a tournament of their own.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: book reviews and excerpts, humor, sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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